Finally, concern about environmental impact has motivated governments and retailers to ban or discourage use of plastic bags. In some cases, paper bags are included in policies that range from charging for bags to selling recyclable or reusable bags as recently reported in The New York Times.
Last year, San Francisco banned all plastic bags that don’t easily break down. NYC retailers must offer plastic bag recycling. And, starting in February 2008, Whole Foods will offer customers a choice between free recycled paper bags (deemed a winner by the National Resources Defense Council) and purchased reusable bags ($).
Here’s your organization’s opportunity:
- Green is seen almost universally as a good, and a value. No need to convince there.
- People still need bags, even as plastic bag bans go into effect more widely.
- Reusable bags are selling like mad (anecdotal, from my observations, and buying experience).
- Produce Your Nonprofit Here bags for sale via your org (at hugely above cost) and/or via retailers (a perfect cause marketing gig, but make sure your cut is substantial).
See some examples above, modeled by our shining star, Charlotte. Make ’em striking enough (attractive, not just serviceable) that they’ll be used again and again (and multiples purchased). Not only do you get the revenue from the purchase, you get the benefit of your bag users marketing your org as they carry the bags around town.
Here are some other creative resusable bag examples, all way more attention getting than the norm. Perhaps a breast cancer org should jump on a cause version of the "No Plastic Bags Bra," a no-hands solution storing two reusable bags in the bra cups.
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