Replacement of single-use plastic bags is important in the wake of the ensuing ban in the Sultanate on such bags from January 1, 2021. Readiness for this among customers and the business houses is important.
The decision has been taken to preserve the Omani environment from the side effects of single-use plastic waste.
Corporate houses, in general, are preparing for the change terming it a welcome step from the authorities and called it a much-needed decision to protect the environment from plastic waste, which consumes the largest space in the garbage bins.
Businesses already have plans in place to meet the challenge of some customers coming without their own shopping bags initially. “It will, of course, be easy when they are accustomed to bringing their own shopping bags,” said a duty manager of a hypermarket in Muscat.
David C, Business Head, Spar Oman, called it a great move, which of course would be a behavioural shift among all our shoppers.
“In accordance with the decision, we at Spar Oman will also be banning single-use shopping bags at our checkouts effective January 1, 2020. While this is a great move for the good of the country and the planet at large, it calls for a behavioural shift among all our shoppers.”
“To ensure that this change is seamless, and caused no inconvenience to our shoppers, we have made available reusable shopping bags for sale at affordable prices across all our stores.”
We are consciously trying to bring in more variety to the portfolio, so that it suits all pocket sizes”.
“On occasion of Arab Environment Day, October 14, 2020, we ran an extensive campaign and gave reusable shopping bags for free to our preferred shoppers (on every purchase of RO 10),” he said.
He assured to continue running such awareness campaigns in the future as well and ensure that by January 1, 2021, Spar and its preferred shoppers are all set to deal with the change very smoothly.
Some responsible citizens sounded full awareness about the step and welcomed it as a deterrent against some irresponsible ones who neither care for the environment nor for the cleanliness after having fun at public places.
“I really endorse this and love the idea, as it not only will save the environment from the onslaught of plastic waste, it will have its impact on food security as well. Since most of the people will carry their own bags to the supermarkets, they will buy up to the limit of the bags they will carry. As of now people land at the supermarkets without any ‘to buy list’ and shop as much as they can because they do not have constraints of carry bags,” said Ali Maqbali, who works in a government department in Muscat.
The catch is for those who do not have any clue about the government’s plan to ban single-use plastic bags.
Farhan, a resident of Salalah, is totally ignorant about the decision. A shopping lover, Farhan started searching for a solution when asked what he would do if single-use plastic bags are banned. “I may need to buy some good quality shopping bags in advance,” he quipped.