The new plastic ban is now being implemented in a number of supermarkets in Bandung as of January 1, 2019. Some stores have even replaced disposable plastic bags with used cardboard boxes in cases where customers forget to bring their reusable shopping bags.
Bandung is not the only Indonesian region to implement this green solution. The popular tourist island of Bali and Bogor City have also issued a ban on the use of disposable plastic bags in a number of shopping locations.
According to Tempo’s observation at a supermarket in Buah Batu Bandung Street, cashiers would first ask whether a customer would need used cardboard boxes that were neatly tied. Reporters from Tempo saw that many customers chose not to tie them since they immediately put them into their vehicles after completing a transaction.
However, the policy has not been made mandatory from what Tempo saw. “Plastic bags are still used for clothing products,” said a male cashier on Monday.
Despite supporting the government’s attempt to reduce plastic waste, this move was met with slight resistance from the Indonesian Plastic Industry Association (Inaplas), which urged regional governments to reconsider the ban and think of a better solution.