Stop Using Paper Grocery Bags as an Alternative to Plastic


Target: John Mackey, Chief Executive Officer of Whole Foods  

Goal: Stop using paper bags as an environmental alternative to plastic bags

In recent years, Whole Foods has served as the model of an environmentally sustainable grocery store. However, almost all grocery stores around the country still offer paper bags as an better alternative to plastic bags in the checkout lines. Both paper bags and plastic bags carry significant environmental costs, and paper bags actually create larger environmental problems in the long run. Encourage grocery store chains to stop using paper grocery bags as an alternative to plastic.

Millions of trees are cut down each year to produce the millions of paper grocery bags that are used in American shopping markets. Paper bags are mass produced with heavy-duty gas-fed machinery after the trees are shipped to saw mills on diesel trucks and fed through equipment to de-bark, chip, cook, spread, and roll the raw materials. It takes three tons of wood and thousands of gallons of water to produce a single ton of paper pulp. According to the Environmental Impact advocacy group, the impact of a paper grocery bag is 77.69, compared to 6.46 for a plastic grocery bag.

Although plastic bags are cheaper to make and transport, they’re more difficult to recycle. Simply put, paper bags cause environmental harm before use and plastic bags cause harm after use. And while the only reasonable alternative is to utilize reusable cloth bags, most people forget to bring them along on shopping trips. A poor memory is not a good excuse for being wasteful. Grocery retailers must step up and bear the burden. If retailers stop providing paper and plastic bags to the American public, people will find better ways to carry their consumer goods. Sign the below petition to urge grocery retailers to stop providing paper and plastic bags to consumers.

[gravityform id=1 name=Signthe Petition: ajax=false]


Dear Mr. Mackey,

The American public relies upon your company to serve as an environmentally sustainable model for other grocery store chains to follow. Whole Foods is in a powerful position to make a statement about polluting paper and plastic bags and influence shoppers to plan ahead and be responsible for their own actions.

Contrary to popular belief, paper bags are not an environmentally safe alternative to plastic bags. Both types of bags are a threat to the longevity of our environment in different harmful ways. I am urging you to stop stocking your stores with both types of bags. By only selling reusable cloth grocery bags and encouraging shoppers to bring their own from home, you will help eliminate unnecessary production and landfill waste.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Uplifting Community via Picassa

Sign the Petition

  • Only your name will be displayed. By signing, you accept our terms and may receive updates on this and related causes.
FacebookCare2 NewsTwitterEmailShare

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Facebook Comments


82 Signatures

  • Ashni Reddy
  • Hermann Kastner
  • James Thrailkill
  • Mal Gaff
  • Terrie Phenicie
  • Holly Hall
  • Nancy Petersen
  • tas FOX
  • Melanie waleski
  • Marianne Oelman
1 of 8123...8
Skip to toolbar