Washington State’s single-use plastic bag ban begins on 10/1/2021. The plastic bag ban applies to all retail, grocery, convenience stores, events where foods or goods are sold, and restaurants.
Interesting fact: Every year Washingtonians use 2 billion single-use plastic bags*.
Per the Plastic Bag Ban website the following items are exempt from the single-use plastic bag ban:
- Bulk items
- Frozen food
- Potted plants
- Prepared food or bakery goods
- Prescription drugs
- Newspaper bags
- Mailing pouches
- Sealed envelopes
- Door hanger bags
- Dry cleaning bags
- Bags sold in packages with multiple bags, like food storage, garbage, or pet waste
Per the program website, the fees are retained by the business to recover costs of providing bags. The new bag fees are taxable. Per the law, retailers are not allowed to not charge the fee. Low-income customers are exempt from being charged the bag fee if they receive benefits from SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program), FAP (Washington State Food Assistance Program), WIC (Women, Infants, and Children), or TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) programs.
Single-use can no longer be used, and there are fees for large paper bags and reusable plastic carryout bags. PDF flyer with all the details for retail businesses.
There are several acceptable bags.
The changes that apply to restaurants and what’s acceptable is a little different. The bags that are banned for restaurants are the same as for retailers. PDF flyer with all the details that apply for restaurants.
The bags that are acceptable for restaurants to use are a little different from retail businesses.
Find all the details for the Plastic Bag Ban at the Washington State Ecology website page for the Plastic Bag Ban.