Uniqlo and GU to charge for shopping bags in a new, eco-friendly initiative

By Katy Kelly, SoraNews24

Pressure is mounting for companies to take action against climate change, and Japan has always been at the forefront of these efforts. From developing an eco-friendly urban village inside of Tokyo to idols running plastic bottle donation drives, every level of Japanese society has people doing their part to heal the world — and fashion brand Uniqlo, as well as its sister store GU, is no different.

Uniqlo, known across the globe for colorful and stylish clothing staples and cheap price tags, already took eco-friendly measures in September 2019 by replacing their plastic bags with forest-certified paper ones. Now they plan to reduce their environmental impact even further by charging 10 yen apiece, plus tax, for providing shopping bags with any given purchase.

From April 1, customers will have a strong incentive to bring a reusable bag from home whenever they’re shopping for bed sheets, underwear or anything else on sale. Customers who haven’t yet picked up a reusable bag of their own can rectify this by purchasing a Uniqlo-branded eco tote bag for just 190 yen plus tax.

But both fashion stores don’t plan on stopping there. According to their website announcement, Uniqlo intends to minimize the amount of plastic packaging on their products as well, citing examples of changes made in 2019 such as cardboard tags for Airism brand products and the removal of plastic packaging for indoor slippers. In the coming year, Heat Tech and GU undershirts will also undergo packaging reworks.

Other companies such as Kit-Kat have started using paper packaging in Japan too, so it will be interesting to see if Uniqlo’s new stances will inspire other companies to follow suit. There’s sure to be a considerable, positive environmental impact just by inspiring people to bring their reusable totes out shopping.

Source: Uniqlo

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© SoraNews24

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Pressure is mounting for companies to take action against climate change, and Japan has always been at the forefront of these efforts.

Is is April 1st today? Seriously?

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Japan has always been at the forefront of these efforts.

Yeah right. When I went to Germany 25 years ago, I had to stuff my purchases in my pockets because the cashiers didnt give bags and I didnt know how to ask for them in German. Japan is the world's great laggard "of these efforts."

10 ( +10 / -0 )

As if switching to paper will save the planet when Japan pushes more paper around in every level of Japanese life that they need to plant massive forests just to keep up with the obsession that Japanese have with paper. And if they do recycle it, I would be amazed since it does seem to go with the 'burnables' so clearly marked around the country's waste bins.

"to take action against climate change, and Japan has always been at the forefront of these efforts"

Oh please...

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Charging for plastic bags means there are still plastic bags being used. Do not supply bags, in the UK shops stopped offering bags and the world didn't end. You soon get used to carrying a bag with you

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Yep this is a joke!

If they are paper bags, then they're already much more environmentally friendly anyway. No need to charge for them! This is pathetic and just a cash grab.

And don't get me started on plastic bags that supermarkets now charge for! It's a national disgrace! Just ban them already!

Rwanda banned plastic ones in 2015, I believe. Can't get them AT ALL. You'll be fined if caught with one. They now use paper bags, and they DON'T charge. And if didn't take until 2035 or whenever to implement. They just did it.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Buy more stuff and heal the world.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

In Germany you won't get free plastic bags anywhere, and you'll get paid back 10-25 euro cents (30 yen) for almost EVERY plastic or glass bottle you return. There are collection machines everywhere. What Japan does is place those stupid garbage bins with three holes that mix anyway aluminium and pet containers.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

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