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The great plastic bag ripoff

Prone for another shafting!

The great plastic bag ripoff

Will Woolworths tell us how many items will be returned to the shelves after angry shoppers have to buy a plastic bag or leave 20 items at the checkout and walk out?

It’s bend over time for another shafting. Instead of being the chosen ones living in the lucky country we have become the shafted ones living in a country fast going down the dunny. It’s usually the damned government shafting its faithful voters with yet another way to get their hands on your money. The renewables green bullshit has worked like a dream for the political elite and a curse for the public. Green levies on too many thing to list have skyrocketed prices—electricity for one. The word “green” has become a key to our wallets. Woolworths today joins the scam with no plastic bags. Oh, they still have plenty of them, more than ever—if you pay. Rita Panahi exposes the rort in the Herald Sun.

SUPERMARKETS have really hit the jackpot with self-checkout and plastic bag bans sure to boost their profitability.

Source: News Corp

Rita Panahi: Supermarkets the big winners from plastic bag ban

Rita Panahi, Herald Sun

From Wednesday, Woolworths supermarkets throughout Victoria as well as BWS, Metro, petrol stations and Big W will ban the use of what have been erroneously labelled “single-use plastic bags” and will charge shoppers for the pleasure of carrying their purchases in thicker plastic bags.

But don’t dare complain because this profitable line of corporate virtue signalling is a sign of progress and supposedly enjoys widespread support.

It’s a sign of how big business can take advantage of the gullibility of well-intentioned consumers.

Not only do an increasing number of shoppers dutifully scan and bag their own items, saving the likes of Woolworths and Coles a fortune in wages, but now we’ll be paying for the plastic or fabric bags needed to carry our groceries.

Supermarkets have really hit the jackpot with self-checkout and plastic bag bans sure to boost their profitability, writes Rita Panahi.

Woolworths will also charge customers receiving home deliveries a flat $1 fee to have their purchases in plastic bags or a stranger can come into your home and unpack your groceries on the kitchen bench for $3.50. No thanks.

Coles supermarkets, Coles Express, Liquorland and First Choice Liquor will start charging for reusable plastic bags from July 1.

Of course this is sold to the masses as some grand environmental gesture to counter the problem of oceans polluted with tonnes of plastic including discarded bags, cups, bottles and more.

But it’s not Australians who are dumping plastic bags and other rubbish in waterways in large numbers.

The fact is that the majority of the plastic in the world’s oceans come from five countries: China, Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam and Thailand. These five are contributing around one million tonnes of plastic trash to the seas each year, according to US environmental non-profit group Ocean Conservancy.

A comprehensive study of plastic pollution published in 2015 suggested that the waste produced by the top polluting countries was even higher.

The research published in the journal of science ranked the top 20 polluting countries and found that 192 countries produced 275 million tonnes of plastic and between 4.8 to 12.7 million tonnes of this waste washed into the sea in a single year. China was the worst culprit, responsible for 1.32 to 3.52 million tonnes, followed by Indonesia and the Philippines. Australia contributed less than 0.01 tonnes to ocean plastic pollution.

What sort of simple-minded mug believes that plastic bag bans in Australia will have any sort of impact in countries with poor sanitation practices where plastic is routinely dumped in the nearest waterway?

Well, who other than the leaders of state and territory governments who have all, with the exception of NSW, imposed plastic bag bans on their constituents which will come into force on July 1, except in Victoria where no date has been set.

If you really want to do something about limiting the amount of litter in Australia then you’d ban smoking, not plastic bags.

Cigarette-related litter is the single biggest source of litter found across Australia, according to the latest National Litter Index report which also showed that plastic bags represent about 1 per cent of litter.

Less than 13 per cent of us smoke, but cigarette butts account for about half of all litter and “remain a disproportionate percentage of all litter counted in Australia”.

Every day you will see smokers thoughtlessly dump the remnants of their cancer sticks in the nearest gutter, in the street or at the beach.

You can go to beautiful remote spots and still see evidence that a smoker was there before you.

But I’m yet to see anybody dump their stash of plastic bags in a stream or waterway — though, of course, there are thoughtless fools who don’t clean up after themselves.

If I had a dollar for every time I picked up a discarded plastic bottle or chip wrapper from the beach I’d have about $100, just a little over what it’ll cost me to pay for plastic bags each year.

In the average week I probably need about 10 bags for groceries and other purchases — all of which are reused as bin and dustbin liners which will now cost $78 a year.

Alternatively, I could use canvas bags for grocery shopping and then purchase plastic bin liners, Woolies have Iyc (If You Care) Waste bags for $7.65 for a pack of 30. Bargain.

No wonder Woolies were keen to beat their competitors and bring in their new plastic-not-so-fantastic policy today.

The term “single-use plastic bag” is misleading, given how many people re-use them as bin liners, to pick up dog poo, to wrap shoes in luggage and a plethora of other users.

To be fair to Woolworths and Coles, they are only getting ahead of the bag bans that will be enforced in Victoria shortly.

In the lead-up to the Northcote by-election, Dan Andrews’ government announced a plastic bag ban.

Labor still lost the seat to the wacky Greens but the rest of us will be paying for their efforts to ingratiate themselves to the Greenie inner-city constituents.

{ 49 comments… add one }
  • luk1955 20/06/2018, 6:38 am

    The biggest waste we find on our streets are fast food containers from maccas, hj, and the like. Rarely a plastic bag can be found anywhere. This is just another attack by our governments on the middle and lower classes to make our lives more difficult and expensive. Governments cause more waste than industry and individuals put together. Let’s start waste eradication by doing away with government regs that create all the waste.

    So from now on when I rinse out my red bin waste created by the lack of plastic bags to contain the waste, I will dump the water into the sewer and get some of my money back when the waste plant has to use more chemicals to treat the waste that would otherwise go into the tip.

    One has only to visit a house or building being built to see large amounts of recyclable waste going to the tip. And industry does very little to recycle waste that can be recycled. There is where some real big inroads into the waste problem can be made. But the greens continue to attack individuals instead of industry, so we know where they get their funding from.

    So I will be declaring my own little war to offset the mess those greenies are creating, and come up with ways to offset their destructive policies.

    • angry 20/06/2018, 11:39 am


      All red rooster, hungry jacks and dominos pizza around here.


      We reuse them for scraps, storage and dog jobbies etc….


      • TommyGun 20/06/2018, 6:32 pm

        No “high horse” at all, Penguinite.
        I simply don’t like using plastic bags and have modified my habits so that I don’t have to.
        It sounds like your main complaint (below) is loss of service and the fact that you will get charged for a bag (if you don’t bring one). So bring a bag (or even a box.) It’s easy.

      • angry 21/06/2018, 8:53 am



        only the braindead would think that was acceptable!

    • TommyGun 20/06/2018, 2:35 pm

      Plastic bags are one thing I have never liked. Ever since I first saw one.
      True, if discarded they are relatively harmless. Until they come to the ocean.
      Quite a few species feed on jellyfish and plastic bags floating in the sea closely resemble jellyfish. So fish, turtles and whales eat them. The plastic bags clog their intestines and they starve to death.
      Yes, Australia’s contribution of bags to the oceans is small. Many other countries are worse. But I believe we should do what we can to minimise the problem. Two wrongs don’t make a right.
      I keep a few bags made of strong cotton in the car. When I do shopping I use those and take them straight back to the car when I’ve sorted out the shopping. Every so often I drop them in the washing machine. I don’t have to pay Coles or Woollies anything.
      It’s quite easy to do. No need to hyperventilate over something so simple.

      • Penguinite 20/06/2018, 4:31 pm

        Whew! That’s some high horse you’ve leapt astride! It’s not the arbitrary removal of plastic bags but the arrogant belief of businesses that they can and then charge us for an alternative. Grocers (except Aldi but they’re German) have always supplied, at no cost, a bag and pack it as part of their service. Service, however, is a concept that slowly buy surely disappearing from the retail vocabulary.

  • DT 20/06/2018, 7:10 am

    What sort of simple minded mug believes that by ridding Australia of coal fired power stations while exporting enormous amounts of our coal to other countries that our politicians are working to save the planet from man-made global warming?

  • DT 20/06/2018, 7:13 am

    Who else remembers the “green” demand to end the use of paper bags?

    The socialism masquerading as environmentalism (thanks PM Tony Abbott for that quote) by greens and their supporters is absolute nonsense.

    We have Environmental Protection Agencies to deal with polluting.

    • Biking Voter 20/06/2018, 10:51 am

      We could have an EPA if they ever got of their arse and did some actual protection.

  • Lorraine 20/06/2018, 7:17 am

    we have been plastic bag free in our town for about 3 years and at the local IGA if you forget your bag 15cents is the charge for the grey plastic bag. Most times I take a bag, but often I buy more than intended then I need the 15 cents bag.
    Shoppers will not over purchase, and this could hit the supermarkets bottom line. I use to like Coles for a major shop , they packed and provided the bags. if this is not happening any more , why major shop, I can go every day to the local.

    • angry 20/06/2018, 11:41 am

      Just a money making exercise for big companies sold to the gullible sheeple of Australia as “saving the world”………….

      what a scam!

  • Pensioner Pete 20/06/2018, 7:50 am

    If you want to enjoy being ripped off, try a hardware store. For example, an automatic tap timer in the store sells for around the $90 mark. Online via eBay, the identical item sells for $40 delivered. My very first job at 14 years of age, was in a hardware store and I was privy to the markups, at the time the markup started at 33% to many 100%s depending on the item.

    • Botswana O'Hooligan 20/06/2018, 8:08 am

      It is the little things that get you and the mark up on a bag with a few nails or screws in it is astronomical. We got a questionnaire from Woollies the other day and I told them that after speaking to the check out chicks in both Woollies and Coles over the past few weeks the businesses will suffer for on average it will take longer to pack goods in all sorts of different bags, people would get pissed off in longer queues, there is a question of hygiene and perhaps more sick leave taken as a result. I also reported that on my daily toddle of about six kilometres I rarely saw a discarded plastic bag, mostly discarded cardboard coffee cups.

      • angry 20/06/2018, 11:43 am

        People should fill up a trolly with random articles, go up to the checkout and just leave it there and walk off !!!!!!!!!


    • Knight Templar 20/06/2018, 9:05 am

      PP.. Not only what you mention..
      Also just about everything you buy is is packaged in multiple items, regardless if you just want a single item.
      A few weeks ago I went to Bunnings and bought an individual “Double Ball Catch” for $1.60…
      Yesterday they only sell the same item in a container of 10… ( $10 ) I only need one as its not the sort of thing you need very often..
      Same thing in the Supermarkets its always in Two’s these days.
      Bloody Rip Off.
      Only group it helps is Muslims with the Halal Tax on just about all purchases … Go figure !!!

  • Penguinite 20/06/2018, 8:25 am

    What is their end game? They stop supplying paper bags to save trees? They stop supplying plastic bags to save the waterways? If you go into a hardware store “Bunnings” you can pack your own stuff into one of their old cardboard boxes which, of course, helps them with their rubbish disposal. There’s more plastic in a motor car bumper than a zillion bags but I don’t see anyone arguing to stop making them out of plastic. No the real target is OIL and its derivatives. Watch out they’ll be on to condoms next! Now there’s a plastic bag worthy of saving and recycling.

  • ibbit 20/06/2018, 8:40 am

    There’s one answer to Woolies, Coles and IGA -sadly – go shop at Aldi who have never had plastic bags and make little pretence of being green. What a horrible word green has become.

    • Albert 20/06/2018, 9:18 am

      I too shop at Aldi and I’m not worried about packing my own purchases because Aldi was up-front from the beginning and never did supply plastic bags. However, I don’t hold the same sentiments about Woolworth and Coles and I’m damned if I’m going to buy their so-called environment friendly heavier plastic bags with their names or logos plastered all over them. Instead I will take my Aldi bags into Woolworths or Coles and that will get right up their noses.
      I have been an enemy of self-checkout since the day they were introduced. When those pushy little front end organisers try to herd me toward the self-checkout corral I remind them that nobody with a brain has a dog and then does the barking himself.

      • Joe Blogs 20/06/2018, 10:02 am

        We shop on-line and have our groceries delivered by Coles. They put everything in nice strong white plastic bags, which we use for the sort of things that Rita Panahi listed. The delivery blokes ask whether we have any of those bags to return.

        At Bunnings recently, an attendant saw that I had only one packaged item and tried to herd me into the OK corral https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HSkq1TxZQTc. I told her that the self-checkout deprives people of jobs – but she showed me her genetically bung arm and said that without the OK she wouldn’t have a job. Had to assuage guilt with a couple of snags’n’onion.

      • ibbit 20/06/2018, 5:11 pm

        I absolutely refuse to use self-serve checkouts because they do someone out of work and I will not be a party to that. Life is hard enough without the likes of Coles and Woolworths putting people out of work for the sake of profits. On rare occasions when I have been escorted to the self-serve checkout I make the herder do the transaction by pretending to be a very dumb little old women out of touch with the world of today.

    • Pensioner Pete 20/06/2018, 11:59 am

      ibbit: Ah, if only we had Aldi, Woolies, Coles, or even a Bunnings, here for a bit of competition. The best this little bush town can offer is a small IGA and even smaller Foodworks. No self serve checkouts thank the heavens, all are manned (err, peopled) by mostly mature age sheilas as the young ones didn’t work out very well with not turning up for work, hung over/drugged/couldn’t give a rats etc.

      • ibbit 20/06/2018, 5:15 pm

        When I was a youngish woman the nearest store to me was one of those old wooden ones which carried everything from flour to ploughs. Loved it and wept when I saw it had been obliterated for a swanky new store which completely lacked the charm of the bushies who once traded there.

  • angry 20/06/2018, 9:02 am





    • Penguinite 20/06/2018, 9:43 am

      that still makes them $0.90/bag? Woolies and Coles buy them by the million which makes them profiteers?

      • angry 20/06/2018, 11:56 am

        at least the money for the bags we purchased did’t go to coles or woolies……..

      • angry 20/06/2018, 12:00 pm

        actually with the freight included it works out at just over 13 cents per bag…….

      • angry 20/06/2018, 2:36 pm

        Just had our bags delivered.

        Nice strong ones, better than coles/woolies used to supply…..

      • Penguinite 20/06/2018, 4:38 pm

        Sorry Angry should have read 9 not 90

  • Rob 20/06/2018, 9:34 am

    There are a number of advertisements appearing on TV with some demented greenie spouting about his “war on waste”. Does anyone else think that as long as this creature is breathing it is wasting oxygen?

    • angry 20/06/2018, 11:45 am


  • Biking Voter 20/06/2018, 10:58 am

    There will be no reduction in plastic bag usage, now you need to buy them so there is certainly nothing green about any of this.

    The Woolies in my town used to spend about $1800 a week on single use plastic bags and Woolies policy was 4 items per bag (depending on item size).

    Rather than banning single use plastic bags, the world would be a better place if we instead banned single minded Greenies.

    • angry 20/06/2018, 2:25 pm

      There needs to be an OPEN SEASON on greenies with NO BAG LIMIT !

      • Deano 20/06/2018, 3:18 pm

        We could recycle greenies. They all seem to have one eye that’s neve been used.

    • Penguinite 20/06/2018, 4:36 pm

      Deano if we recycled Greenies they would turn into compost/ How good would that be!

    • ibbit 20/06/2018, 5:20 pm

      Agree – often think the best thing Peter Dutton could do is to round up every greenie in Australia and send them up in a rocket ship with no means of landing.
      Actually I have a stock of green bags acquired the last time the Labor mob were in government. Didn’t throw them out because one knew with Turnbull on the job he would not stop till he became PM and those bags could be reused, as they now are going to be.

  • dweezy2176 20/06/2018, 11:44 am

    Neat move by Coles though .. Woolworth’s goes bag-free tomorrow but Coles leaves it until July 1 .. interesting to see the profit figures for the 10 day difference .. methinx, Coles will be on a short-time winner!

  • Graham 20/06/2018, 12:25 pm

    The whole exercise is pointless. Look at all the items you buy that are packaged in plastic. Even items that used to be in glass bottles have gone to plastic.

  • Graham Richards 20/06/2018, 12:31 pm

    Go shop at Coles until their anti plastic policy comes in then switch to Aldi which doesn’t supply plastic bags but every shopping trip will save you at least 30%.
    The only thing that’ll make them understand is to stop shopping at their stores, even if it’s just 50% of your shopping, there’ll still be a big impact!

  • Zoltan 20/06/2018, 1:38 pm

    Like so many things in life, I don’t like it but I guess I’ll soon get used to it, anyway, anything that helps stop the bleaching of the expanding polar ice caps can only be good. (I’m sooo green)
    I would change to aldi, but the 1400km round trip is probably cost prohibitive.

  • Clarion Call 20/06/2018, 1:46 pm

    But the worse is yet to come. Just heard that the world is now suffering from a shortage of vinyl trees due to some virus. What will we do without that everyday material to cover our furniture and stuff? Grow more cows? Big problem looming, methinks.

    • angry 20/06/2018, 2:26 pm

      Cover them in GREENIE SKINS………..

  • Catherine Priestley 20/06/2018, 2:33 pm

    Just buy 2 of those $2 bags from Woolworths put them on your back seat ( in the boot you’ll forget to take them) and your problem is solved! They will last forever and you will be helping to cut plastic crap from harming our environment!

  • Deano 20/06/2018, 3:15 pm

    In WA (Labor) they’re talking about banning plastic drinking straws too. The idea is to ban widespread popular items with tiny volumes of plastic in them. When the total tonnage of plastics in the environment barely moves, this gives them a chance to announce taxes on all plastic products.


    • TommyGun 20/06/2018, 6:37 pm

      I think there should be huge tax on all plastic unless it is biodegradable plastic made from corn starch. That way, the bio-plastic can compete on an even footing and the customer has a choice.

    • Zoltan 20/06/2018, 10:03 pm

      Maybe they can just use the paper tubes the plastic straws come in?

    • angry 21/06/2018, 8:49 am

      DICKHEAD LABOR SCUM !~$$$@#%&%

      • TommyGun 21/06/2018, 4:02 pm

        Yes; fully agree, Angry. Most of them seem to be.

  • Kal 20/06/2018, 8:12 pm

    When I was a kid the man from Moran & Cato came on Monday wrote my mother’s order in his note pad and on Wednesday the groceries arrived ,neatly packed in cardboard box and the man would take last weeks box with him. That was service!

  • Bh 20/06/2018, 8:36 pm

    Have noticed that other large stores, e.g. JB Hifi, are now trying to discourage shoppers from taking plastic bags. They’ll put your stuff in a bag, but not before asking if you really want it bagged. Anyway, carrying around the stuff you’ve just purchased, openly, without a bag, is going to open you up to accusations of shoplifting.

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