New Zealand Law Society - Guidance given to businesses before plastic bag ban

Guidance given to businesses before plastic bag ban

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The Ministry for the Environment has released guidance for businesses ahead of the implementation of the Waste Minimisation (Plastic Shopping Bags) Regulations 2018.

The regulations ban single-use plastic shopping bags under 70 microns in thickness from 1 July 2019.

The regulations apply to all businesses in New Zealand who sell goods, including sales directly to consumers, business-to-business transactions and online sales.  They apply to small produce markets and retail stores, through to large department stores and supermarkets, and both profit and not-for-profit organisations. 

The ministry says it is helping businesses transition though providing advice on what to do with left over plastic bag stock, the pros and cons for alternatives to single-use plastic shopping bags, and recommended questions for businesses ask to suppliers when choosing an alternative.

The Waste Minimisation Act 2008 allows for fines of up to $100,000 to be issued when parties deliberately breach regulations under the Act.