Stop & Shop Offers Free Reusable Bags at Long Island Stores Ahead of Statewide Ban on Carryout Plastic Bags

A statewide plastic bag ban in NY is due to go into effect on March 1

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In an effort to help customers make the transition away from carryout plastic bags ahead of the statewide ban set to take effect on March 1, Stop & Shop will be offering FREE reusable bags at its store locations across New York. Beginning February 22, Stop & Shop will have information tables set up at stores to answer questions about the upcoming ban and to provide giveaway items including a free reusable bag for every customer who brings in one or more carryout plastic bags for recycling, with a limit of one per customer per visit while supplies last.* The plastic bags collected will be recycled into composite wood, which is used for things like decking, park benches, and playground equipment.

In New York cities or counties that have chosen to implement a 5-cent paper bag reduction fee, Stop & Shop will collect and remit the funds to the government, per the state law. At stores where the city or county has chosen not to institute the 5-cent paper bag reduction fee, Stop & Shop will charge 5 cents per bag in an effort to encourage its customers to use reusable bags. Stop & Shop will donate the funds collected from this charge to local environmental conservation groups including the following:

  • Coastal Research & Education Society of Long Island, Inc.
  • Riverkeeper
  • Westchester Land Trust

“Sustainability is a priority at Stop & Shop, and we’re committed to encouraging the use of reusables and to helping our customers make the transition,” said Gordon Reid, Stop & Shop’s President. “By charging 5 cents for paper, we’re encouraging our customers to make the switch to reusable bags – while also supporting local non-profits that are doing important work to protect and preserve the environment in New York State.”

“We at the Coastal Research & Education Society of Long Island, Inc. (CRESLI) continue to work to educate about and advocate for reducing and ultimately eliminating the use of plastic bags and other materials made of plastics,” said Dr. Arthur Kopelman, President and Co-Founder of the Coal Research & Education Society of Long Island.

“Not only are plastics bags sources of pollution, they can entangle and be ingested by marine organism, thereby causing sickness and death. Stop & Shop’s efforts to replace plastic and paper bags with reusable bags is an important early step in the transition to new paradigms of environmental, social, and economic sustainability. We support what Stop & Shop is doing and are proud to join our colleagues at Riverkeeper and Westchester Land Trust in being recipients of donations from their efforts.”

Dedicated to reducing its environmental footprint, Stop & Shop recycled approximately 350 million pounds of material including plastics and cardboard in 2019 – diverting 73% of the company’s waste from landfills. To learn more about Stop & Shop’s sustainability efforts, visit