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Canadian store shames shoppers into not using plastic bags

Chris Pastrick
1282900_web1_ptr-AdultBag-061319
East West Market/Facebook
The East West Market in Vancouver has ordered plastic bags with some rather embarrassing logos on them, in hopes that shoppers will just opt to bring their own bags to haul their groceries home.

One Canadian grocery story has come up with a pretty ingenious way of discouraging its customers from using plastic bags: shame.

The East West Market in Vancouver, British Columbia, is looking to push the green agenda. To that effort, they ordered plastic bags with some rather embarrassing logos on them — in hopes that shoppers will just opt to bring their own bags to haul their groceries home.

The white bags come with the labels “Wart Ointment,” “The Colon Care Co-op” or “Adult Video Emporium.”

And while it might seem like a pretty neat idea, it appears to have backfired a bit, as Facebook poster Carley Woodward points out, “Nope this just makes me want to use your plastic bags even more, sorry not sorry, this is awesome.”

Oops.

Kim Steenstrup Carlsson puts it a bit more bluntly: “Fight plastic bag use by manufacturing plastic bags that people want to come get is NOT fighting plastic bag use and not at all helping the environment. A totally counterproductive and a stupid stunt to get people into the store.”

Ouch.

Store owner David Lee Kwen told The Guardian he originally tried adding a fee to using plastic bags, but that didn’t work. So, he came up with this plan. But, he said, the main goal wasn’t to embarrass his customers. “We wanted to give them something humorous, but also something that made them think at the same time,” he said. “It’s human nature not to want to be told what to do.”

On Monday, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the country will ban single-use plastics as early as 2021.

Chris Pastrick is a Tribune-Review digital producer. You can contact Chris at 412-320-7898, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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