War on plastic. South African supermarkets are ditching the bags.

SPAR Western Cape plastic bags

This week Hilton Quarry Superspar joined other supermarkets against the plastic bag fight and confirmed it had ditched plastic in favour of other options.


Superspar manager Sunil Mothilal said it had replaced plastic bags with brown bags or material bags or customers could bring their own shopping bags.

“The brown bags are more expensive than plastic but we are looking at the long term and we have tried to keep the cost as low as possible. We have had a lot of positive feedback,” said Mothilal.

The company posted this photo on their social media page which has already had thousands of shares.

So we all know that plastic is bad for the environment however, in case you need a few reminders, here are some statistics on the effects of plastic in the environment:

  • An estimated 6 billion plastic bags are consumed in each country every year.
  • 10% of the plastic that is produced worldwide each year winds up in the ocean—70% of which sinks to the ocean floor where it will never biodegrade.
  • Every square kilometer of the ocean has approximately 46,000 pieces of floating plastic which get mistaken for food by some marine mammals passing by. Other wildlife will unfortunately get tangled up in the loose plastic and drown.
  • Plastic bags that are buried in landfills can take up to 1,000 years to decompose and during this time, they undergo photo-degradation, a process by which an item (in this case, plastic) is chemically broken down through the absorption of sunlight, therefore contaminating soil and water.
  • The production of plastic bags also use up millions of gallons of oil, contributing further to the already existing greenhouse gas problem.

Not surprisingly, plastic bags are the worst option to choose at the store due to the several environmental implications they have on the environment. Paper bags are also an option, but cannot really be reused.

Material, reusable bags are the best option and one of the great things about reusable bags is that they are manufactured responsibly without using environmentally harmful materials. Each reusable bag can eliminate hundreds and thousands of plastic bags and be used thousands of times.

Sources: Facebook
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Brent Lindeque is the founder and man in charge at Good Things Guy. Recognised as one of the Mail and Guardian’s Top 200 Young South African’s as well as a Primedia LeadSA Hero, Brent is a change maker, thought leader, radio host, foodie, vlogger, writer and all round good guy.


  1. Nanette

    October 9, 2017 at 1:05 pm

    Awesome initiative wish all the stores will do it including takeaway food can we also have a look at plastic straws and disposable plastic cutlery.

  2. Marie

    October 9, 2017 at 1:36 pm

    Coming from Canada I applaud the move to get rid of all these plastic bags especially since recycling is not big business here.
    I must say I encourage eveveryone to bring your own sturdy cloth bags.
    Paper bags, while more biodegradable, come from trees. Need I say more???

  3. Linda

    October 11, 2017 at 10:26 pm

    I don’t. Nor do many others. On the other hand, the elderly might need help as they are slower and may find things difficult to pack because of arthritis or simply because they are old!

  4. Kay Horn

    October 14, 2017 at 2:27 pm

    Fantastic. Thank you for every good step forward!

  5. Eben

    January 6, 2018 at 3:32 pm

    The biggest problem is human beings.
    Human beings must go too

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