Guam - In January Pay-Less Supermarkets launched its Mission: Zero Bags campaign. And with three quarters of the way to reaching its goal of eliminating 1.1 million plastic bags on island, the company is set to roll out more initiatives in the community.
Seven months in and payless supermarkets has already made strides of eliminating plastic bags into the landfill. "And we have distributed over 56,000 reusable bags into our community, we have given out 200,000 bag refunds and we are down to 230,000 in our goal of eliminating 1.1 million plastic bags in our community," said Kathy Sgro with Pay-Less.
Its been through Pay-Less Supermarkets' Mission: Zero Bags campaign which for the past Wednesdays has not issued plastic bags but instead encouraged customers to bring in their own reusable bags and get a five cent rebate. Anyone requesting a bag instead was charged five cents per brown bag with 100 percent of the proceeds going toward the community mini-grant program. "And so what it is, this mini grant is really geared toward giving back to the community, and so those non profit organizations, different schools both public and private schools and other government agencies are eligible to receive this grant," she said.
According to marketing manager Carina Pegarido, the total grant amount is $5,000 and individual organizations with green initiatives can receive a minimum of $1,000. In addition to raising funds for the grant, she says the campaign isn't only for Pay-Less. "We're also encouraging different retailers and our customers to be able to use their reusable bags at different establishments not only at pay-less so that's something that is really exciting for us to see," she said.
Ultimately, it's because of the community's support that the campaign has been a success. "This is a big effort, it's a lifestyle change and something changes are uncomfortable but we believe this is for the greater good for our island," she said.
In addition to the many incentives Pay-Less offers it customers for helping it reach its mission zero bags goal, Sgro announces its go-green celebration during the weeks of July 27 to August 8, thanking customers for their support. "And we're going to be having for about a week, a lot of free giveaways, product sampling and every single day there's going to be a discount given to customers who bring in their reusable bags," she said.