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  1. ITV Report

Tesco set to scrap 5p carrier bags in stores

Tesco May scrap single-use 5p bags Credit: PA

Tesco has become the first major supermarket to try phasing out 5p single-use carrier bags, meaning shoppers who don't take their own to store will have to buy bags for life.

The retailer has launched the 10-week trial in its Aberdeen, Dundee and Norwich stores and if successful, it could scrap single-use bags.

Laws introduced in England in October 2015 forced larger retailers to apply a 5p charge to flimsy single-use carriers - a scheme already in place in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Bags for life are made from a thicker plastic and cost 8p and 10p.

We are carrying out a short trial in a few stores to look at the impact on bag usage if we remove single use carrier bags.

In these stores customers who need a bag can still buy a Bag for Life which they can reuse.

– Tesco spokesperson

The supermarket said that online customers will still have the option of buying 5p carriers to have their shopping delivered in - but 57% now choose bagless deliveries.

Official figures released last July showed an 85% drop in the number of single-use bags used by shoppers once the charge was introduced.

7bn
single-use carrier bags given to customers by seven retailers in 2014
0.5bn
single-use carrier bags given out in the first six months after the charge was introduced

As well as being designed to benefit the environment by reducing the amount of plastic in circulation, retailers are expected to donate the 5p charge for bags to good causes.

Tesco told ITV News its Bags of Help scheme, which supports local groups as chosen by customers, will continue using profits from bags for life.