Plastic Bags at Retail | Nose Under the Community Tent | Paul Losch | Palo Alto Online |

Local Blogs

By Paul Losch

Plastic Bags at Retail

Uploaded: Apr 5, 2013

I don't think I am alone in not understanding what the plastic bag ordinances, banning plastic bags at virtually all retail establishments in town, really means.

I was shopping in a well known grocery store in Palo Alto, and another in MP. Both had signs to alert people that there will be no more plastic bags allowed at check-out in the near future, and paper bags will cost 10cents apiece. All in the effort to encourage people to use cloth bags.

I thought about this as I was in the produce aisle, putting my veggies and fruits in plastic bags. Are these affected, even though they have the recycling symbol on them. Or will we go back to brown bags for such items as fruits, nuts, vegetables, pastries, inter alia?

What about dry cleaners? Dining establishments that put to go food in Styrofoam containers and then go into a paper bag.

I try to be a "greenie" as much as possible, and I suspect that I, as a consumer, is even less confused than are the retailers who have to drop the paper or plastic practices.

I just don't know what it means.
It is the right direction, and the devil is in the details.

One anecdote that may display how far our part of the world has come, compared to other parts of the country:

A college friend of mine has a son who,after college got a gig in the Florida Panhandle. He went to a typical party for people at that age, like what you kinda see in commercials. He finished a beer in a can, and asked where the recycling bin was. There was none. The people he asked had no clue what he was talking about.
So, we are on the right track in these parts, I detect some denial elsewhere.

And even those of us with the best of intentions are confused.