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Australian supermarket chain reverses free plastic bag ban

August 1, 2018

SYDNEY (AP) — A major Australian supermarket chain has come under fire from environmentalists for reversing a decision to stop providing free plastic bags to shoppers.

Coles has been handing out reusable plastic bags to most of its Australian customers since July 1 when it began a ban on single-use plastic bags and told customers they’d have to begin paying for the reusable bags.

It planned to stop providing the reusable Better Bags for free Wednesday and start charging customers 15 Australian cents (11 cents) per bag, but has now reversed that decision and appears set to provide them indefinitely.

Coles said in a statement that when the ban on single-use plastic bags began, some customers said they needed more time to transition to reusable bags.

Greenpeace described Coles as irresponsible and disappointing.

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