Plastic Bags

Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs written question – answered on 2nd September 2020.

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Photo of Wera Hobhouse Wera Hobhouse Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Environment and Climate Change), Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Energy)

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many single-use plastic bags have been sold in each year since the levy on plastic bags was introduced.

Photo of Wera Hobhouse Wera Hobhouse Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Environment and Climate Change), Liberal Democrat Spokesperson (Energy)

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many plastic bags for life have been sold in each year since the introduction of the plastic bag levy in 2015.

Photo of Rebecca Pow Rebecca Pow The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Since 5 October 2015, large retailers in England have been required by law to charge a minimum of 5p for single-use plastic bags and to report on the number they sell each year.

The total number of single-use plastic bags that were sold by large retailers each full reporting year is as follows: 2.12 billion in 2016/17, 1.75 billion in 2017/18,1.11 billion in 2018/19 and 564 million in 2019/20.

Retailers are not required to report on the number of plastic bags for life sold as these are not within the scope of the carrier bag charge. However, they can provide this information voluntarily.

The full datasets for each reporting year are on GOV.UK and can be accessed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/carrier-bag-charge-summary-of-data-in-england.

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