After learning about a few marketing techniques to be green, but not really sustainable in class last week, it really got me thinking about those re-usable grocery bags that what seems like EVERY GROCERY STORE ON THE PLANET is using now a days. Don’t get me wrong, I think they’re a great idea, and its obvious that plastic bags are definitely harmful to the environment, but does every single consumer need 10 of these bags? Really?
I really liked the idea when it first started, but now it seems to me that a lot of grocery stores and liquor stores are just adopting this practice to promote their company, and as a method of green selling. Companies are constantly gifting these bags to customers, which results in people having way more bags than they could possibly have a use for. What’s worse is that a lot of stores throw these bags together so quickly and haphazardly that the bags break after a couple uses anyway, so they don’t even serve the intended purpose! I think a lot of people look at the canvas material, and beige-green-earthy tone of the bag and think that they must be 100% sustainable to make… but manufacturing anything requires energy, and I don’t know about you guys, but I’ve seen some pretty nice reusable bags that I’m sure aren’t the most eco-friendly in terms of their materials.
So why grocery and liquor stores? Why doesn’t every store give away and promote the use of these bags? I think it’s a perfect example of Green Selling.
Safeway, Save-on, Superstore, wherever…. they all sell tons and tons of food and other products that they have shipped in from who knows where all over the world so that they can save on costs of product. The effect that all of this transportation no doubt has a terrible effect on the environment, and is most definitely not sustainable. Essentially, the marketing company at all of these grocery stores are hoping to focus on the bag aspect of their business, pushing the fact that it’s environmentally friendly (although debate-ably so in my eyes…) and are hoping that customers don’t realise the actual impact that the store is having on the environment as a big picture! I personally think that companies should slow down on the production and distribution of these reusable bags, I’m pretty sure everyone has more than enough by now, and if someone doesn’t have one, it’s probably not a result of not being offered one. If companies could stop focusing on the bags, and maybe place a bit more emphasis on maybe running commercials reminding you to bring your bag, because I don’t know about you, but I have about 10 of these and I forget them every time I go shopping.
Anyways, just my little rant, let me know what you guys think! Are reusable bags all good? All bad… a mix?