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SEATTLE -- PCC Natural Markets here said yesterday it will stop using plastic shopping bags as of Oct. 1. The certified organic retail cooperative will enhance its current program to encourage customers to reuse their own bags by offering a variety of reusable totes at cost and continuing to provide free paper bags.
"While this decision to eliminate plastic shopping bags will entail some additional cost, it's simply the right thing to do," noted PCC c.e.o. Tracy Wolpert in a statement. "We have studied the environmental impact of paper vs. plastic and believe that paper is the more sustainable choice, while bag reuse is the best choice of all."
PCC has long incorporated sustainable practices in its operations, building practices, and long-term mission, according to the company, which says it will continue to investigate further opportunities for introducing sustainable packaging and supplies at its stores.
The city of San Francisco enacted a ban against plastic shopping bags in April, and such cities as Seattle; Boston; Baltimore; Oakland; Portland, Ore.; Santa Monica, Calif.; and Steamboat Springs, Colo. are considering similar legislation.
PCC operates eight stores in the Seward Park, View Ridge, Greenlake, West Seattle, Fremont, Kirkland, Redmond, and Issaquah neighborhoods of King County, Wash.