It has been with us for a while now, and whether we like it or not it is here to stay. Yes the 5 pence we now have to pay for a bag when we are shopping. There are a few loop holes in this great vast scheme of things, one being if you buy raw meat you get a bag free! That is of course unless you place something else inside, then you have to pay. “All you have to do is put a chocolate bar in the bag and that changes the whole thing”. There was also a myth (and yes it is a myth) that you did not have to pay for a bag if it had the shop logo on it, it is deemed advertising for the company.
Two complaining ladies
I was walking through town the other day and almost bumping into them, I heard two ladies complain about the fact of paying the 5p. “No, he wouldn’t give it to me free but I told him it was law” said one. ” so he made you pay for it in the end then” and imagine my disbelief when I heard the First Ladies reply, ” yes he did, disgusting shouldn’t have to pay for it”. Now in our house 5 pence don’t normally break the bank neither does 10 or even 20p, the cost of 4 bags. Many companies have chosen to donate the money to charity, but many have not opted in for this option resulting in even more profits from the consumer. Although they do have to declare it to gov.co.uk what they are doing with the money, and this will eventually be made public. It also (and I don’t know if many know this) depends on the size of the retail company, they have to charge if there is more than 250 employees (smaller companies can charge on a voluntary basis).
Gov.co.uk have stated that they expect charity funds to be raised in excess of £730 million, with an overall benefit on the economy of over £780 million.
Buying out of the system
There is one sure way of getting out of paying the 5 pence, and that is buy a bag for life to which we have many in our house. Yes they cost more than the trivial 5 pence, but last longer so you are not paying out as much and last certainly longer. These bags also have more than one use other than the shopping, like carrying lunch to a picnic area on a day out. Some have designs on which would satisfy even the more fashion conscious among us, and they don’t stop the blood in your fingers tips when laden down with food.
Think of the upside
There is a good side of course to paying the 5 pence, before you start to complain about the charge, get to know the warm feeling. The warm feeling of the help you are doing to possible charities, helping promote the economy and doing good to the land around us. For everything that seems negative there is always a plus, you just have to find it. Buying a ‘bag for life’ you get to use it for more than one purpose, a cheap bag that can be replaced easily than a high end sports bag. So before you complain, take stock and think about the good that is coming out of the charge.
Let me know what you think about the charge. Have a count up and see how many bags you have laying around. And how many ‘bags for life’ have you got?