Say goodbye to plastic and hello to paper! B.C. Liquor stores are finally scrapping plastic bags across the province. While this decision seems to be ruffling the feathers of some long-time BCL customers, others are rejoicing at the news that government liquor stores will now be even more environmentally-friendly. 

It's official, BCL is swapping their plastic bags for paper alternatives. Narcity spoke to a British Columbia Liquor Distribution Branch representative to get all the details.

The spokesperson told Narcity that this change will only be impacting B.C. Liquor stores, not independent retailers. "We have 197 stores, there’s about eight that have already switched over. Then there are about 670 private liquor stores out there. We don’t govern them," she explained.

"There are a lot of municipalities in B.C. that are already switching including Victoria, Tofino, Ucluelet, Salmon Arm, and Cumberland in all our stores operating in those communities," she continued.

BC Liquor Stores gave us some insight into when the paper bags are expected to be rolled out in stores across B.C. “The timeline of the implementation depends on the procurement process. We just released the Request for Proposals (RFP) on Friday, so we need to enter into a contract with a vendor who can meet our requirements," the BCL spokesperson told Narcity.

The "requirements" she speaks of are the following "We’re asking for the [paper] bags to be a particular strength, they have to be able to hold 16 and a half pounds which is roughly 6 bottles of wine or a 6-pack of beer and two bottles of wine."

Once they are able to find the perfect vendor, implementation will begin.

"We want it to be able to hold our products securely. Obviously, the best alternative is reusable cloth bags. But if someone comes in and needs a paper bag, we want to be able to provide them with something that’s strong enough to get the product home safely," the representative explained.

Though paper will be replacing plastic, durability will not be something to worry about as it is a key factor in the search for a vendor. If you don't like paper, bring your own bag! 

Other major Canadian retailers are also making the swap from paper to environmentally-friendly alternatives. Sobeys scrapped plastic bags last week, ALDO followed close behind, and now BCLs are right on their heels. Who's next?

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