Nakumatt has become the first retail-chain to embrace the use of re-usable bags following government’s impending ban on use of plastic bags.
In a notice dated February 28, Environment and Natural Resources Cabinet secretary Judi Wakhungu announced the ban which was to take effect six months from the date of issuance of the notice.
“It is notified to the public that the Cabinet Secretary for Environment and Natural Resources has with effect from 6 months from the date of this notice banned the use, manufacture and importation of all plastic bags used for commercial and household packaging,” stated Prof Wakhungu in a gazette notice dated February 28.
The ban which includes importation, manufacture and use of plastic bags categorises the bags as carrier bags-bag constructed with handles, and with or without gussets” and flat bag- bag constructed without handles and with or without gussets.
In the light of the above, Nakumatt has kicked off the implementation of the legislation in earnest and shoppers visiting Nakumatt branches countrywide are now required to either shop with their own bags or redeem points to be provided with reusable shopping bags.
“We would like to encourage all our customers to consider using reusable bags instead of the plastic bags, now that the government plans to ban the use of plastic bags…” said a response from Nakumatt’s official Twitter account @Nakumatt.
Shoppers are advised to redeem 50 points an equivalent of Sh75 for large bags or redeem 33 points an equivalent of Sh50 for smaller bags.
When Nakumatt rolled out the phasing out of the usual plastic bags, a number of customers appeared to resist the initiative with some terming the idea as an attempt to “force customers to buy the Nakumatt labelled bags.”
However, a number of shoppers have embraced the re-usable bags as a great effort to saving the environment. “This is a great step, a very positive move towards saving our environment,” said Hashim Ahmed a shopper in Likoni. The government attempted to ban plastic bags in 2007 but failed.