Almost two years ago, IKEA announced it was going to start charging for plastic bags in the UK; then we heard that IKEA US was following suit by charging five cents per plastic bag. Soon after, that news was followed by a plastic bag ban in their UK stores, so perhaps the latest from the Swedish flat-packers shouldn't be too surprising: in an effort to promote the use of reusable bags, IKEA will no longer offer plastic bags starting in October.
Judging by the numbers, this won't be a huge stretch for IKEA customers: last March, IKEA set a goal of reducing its US stores' plastic bag consumption by 50%; after crunching some numbers, a whopping 92% of IKEA customers went for the reusable bag over the pay-for-plastic option. That's a lot of big blue bags, and even more plastic bags kept out of landfills.According to their press release, "Since the 'bag the plastic bag' program began in March 2007, IKEA has donated more than $300,000 from their disposable plastic bag sales to American Forests. And since 1998, IKEA has contributed over $728,000 for the planting of trees in the US; this is enough trees to offset approximately 100,000 tons of CO2 emissions over the next 40 years."