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Zero Waste

 Have a look below for some advice on how you can save money by reusing and reducing your carrier bag use.

Carrier Bag Charging Scheme

The carrier bag charging scheme began in October 2015. Since the scheme has begun, 80% fewer bags (over 9 billion ) have been used. You can find out more about the scheme by clicking here.

Plastic Carrier Bag Alternatives and Advice

Reusable Bags

Reusable bags come in all sorts of colours, materials and sizes and many can be folded to fit into handbags/pockets. They are generally made out of stronger materials and will last longer than plastic/ paper bags, they also have softer handles which make it much easier for carrying heavy shopping.

Request a cotton bag
Did you know that you can request a free Recycle Devon Cotton ba
g on the 'Request a Publication' page?  (Please note the bags are limited to one per household)


Instead of using bags, some people opt to take boxes with them when going to the supermarket.They can be placed in the trollies and make packing super easy at the checkout. It's best to use boxes that are as sturdy as possible to ensure they last longer.

Bags for Life

Most supermarkets sell their own variation of the 'Bag for Life' usually for around 10p. These bags are generally made of plastic, however they are much more durable and can be reused over and over again. Once the bag has worn out, it can be taken back to the store to be replaced for free.

Opting out of plastic bags from home deliveries

Many supermarkets charge a flat rate for carrier bags received from home deliveries. This is usually around 40p. To avoid receiving and paying for these bags, ensure you tick the 'opt out' button when placing your order online.

Advice for businesses

RetailBusinesses with under 250 staff do not have to charge for carrier bags, though many are choosing to opt into the scheme. Larger companies will need to and will be responsible for ensuring bags are charged for. If you are a business owner or retailer, you can find out more information about the scheme here.