Quebec consumers overwhelmly support Loblaw plastic shopping bag reduction program



    Loblaw distributed 84 per cent fewer plastic shopping bags in Quebec
    during initial six weeks of program

    MONTREAL, June 11 /CNW Telbec/ - Following the launch of Loblaw Companies
Limited's, plastic bag reduction program on April 22, 2009, in Loblaw
corporate and participating franchise stores, Quebec consumers have embraced
the use of reusable shopping bag options. Data collected by Loblaw shows an 84
per cent reduction in plastic shopping bag use in Quebec stores. This type of
support will greatly assist Loblaw as it strives to reach its stated goal of
diverting one billion plastic shopping bags from landfills by the end of 2009.
    "We are encouraged by the support we have seen from customers in the
initial phase of the plastic bag reduction program," said Jocyanne Bourdeau,
Executive Vice-President, Quebec Region, Loblaw Companies Limited. "Prior to
launching this program, Loblaw tested and evaluated various approaches in an
effort to identify the most effective solution to reduce shopping bag use.
Reduction results, such as those in Quebec, support our research findings and
clearly show that a charge per bag strategy is the key driver behind
significantly reducing plastic shopping bag use."
    Shopping with reusable bags requires a change in behaviour and customers
are supportive of making that change. Nationally Loblaw corporate and
participating franchise stores have seen a 75 per cent reduction in plastic
bag use. Quebec's slightly higher reduction rate of 84 per cent is in line
with the results of a survey conducted for Loblaw in March 2009 by Léger
Marketing. This survey revealed that 84 % of Quebeckers support Loblaw's plan
to divert one billion plastic shopping bags from landfills by implementing a
pay per plastic bag program.
    Many efforts are been taken to assist customers in the transition to
reusable bag options including Bring It reminder signage, in-store customer
announcements, limited time promotional offers on reusable bag options and
importantly a new, 33 per cent larger and heavier gauge plastic shopping bag.
The new bag is now made with 15 per cent plastic waste material recovered from
the manufacturing process and the thicker larger bag makes it stronger,
allowing for repeat use and more items per bag.

    In Quebec, Loblaw Companies Limited operates under the Loblaws, Maxi,
Maxi & Co, Provigo, Club entrepot and Presto banners.

    About Loblaw Companies Limited

    Loblaw Companies Limited, a subsidiary of George Weston Limited, is
Canada's largest food distributor and a leading provider of drugstore, general
merchandise and financial products and services. Loblaw is one of the largest
private sector employers in Canada. With more than 1,000 corporate and
franchised stores from coast to coast, Loblaw and its franchisees employ over
139,000 full-time and part-time employees. Through its portfolio of store
formats, Loblaw is committed to providing Canadians with a wide, growing and
successful range of products and services to meet the everyday household
demands of Canadian consumers. Loblaw is known for the quality, innovation and
value of its food offering. It offers Canada's strongest control (private)
label program, including the unique President's Choice(R), no name(R) and Joe
Fresh Style(R) brands. In addition, the Company makes available to consumers
President's Choice financial services and offers the PC points loyalty
program.




For further information:

For further information: or to obtain images, please contact: Josée
Bédard, Senior Director, Corporate Affairs, Provigo, a member of the Loblaw
Group, (514) 383-8800, ext. 6142, jbedard@provigo.ca

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Provigo, membre du groupe Loblaw

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