Corvallis (KMTR) - Corvallis shoppers and store owners will be making a big change when 2013 begins. The city's new plastic bag ban, passed in October, takes effect on Tuesday.
This is the first phase of the ordinance and it will only affect companies that employ more than 50 people. This phase will allow shoppers and stores to adjust and make any needed changes before July first, when the second phase will include smaller stores.
The Grocery Outlet store in Corvallis employs just 29 people, so they have a few months before making the switch. Store manager Terry Neumann sees both benefits and possible concerns with the change. For one thing, store owners pay more for paper bags.
Neumann is also concerned about whether customers will keep their reusable bags clean. “We do see some that are less than sanitary and that is a concern,” said Neumann. “Is it going into your shopping baskets?”
The ban applies to thin plastic bags that most supermarkets use. Corvallis stores will charge shoppers a nickel for each paper bag handed out, in place of a plastic bag or the shopper’s own reusable bag. The ban does not apply to plastic bags used to carry produce, meat and bulk food.
Corvallis is following the lead of Portland, Seattle, and Bellingham, Washington.
Soon, Eugene shoppers will be adjusting to the same policy. The bag ban in Eugene takes effect on May 1, 2013.