Secret solution to Woolies bag problem
A woman has warned shoppers to "check your receipts" after she was charged for her reusable bag - but there's a simple solution to avoid paying again.
Writing on the Woolworths Facebook page the disgruntled shopper claimed she had been charged on four separate occasions for the same reusable plastic bag.
She said this had happened despite it being "quite obvious" the bag wasn't brand new whenever she handed it to her Woolworths cashier.
"The scrunched up handles and few little tears are also a dead give away. Not to mention the fact that when I hand it over I say 'here's my bag'," she wrote.
"Please people, check your receipts from Woolies as I'm sure I'm not the only one this would be happening to."
In response to the woman's complaint another shopper offered a quick fix - and it's so simple, you'll wonder why you hadn't thought of it before.
"Scratch out the barcode with a permanent marker," one commenter suggest. "It's not their fault if it keeps scanning because you haven't."
In response to the complaint a Woolworths spokesperson wrote on Facebook they were "sorry" about the customer being charged multiple times.
"It looks like an error by one of our team members, and we'd be more than happy to fix it up next time you're in store. We like seeing our customers bring their own bags and wouldn't intentionally re-scan them."
While single-use plastic bags were banned from Coles and Woolworths in 2018, Australia's major supermarkets have continued to come under fire.
Frustrated shoppers have taken to social media to complain about the amount of packaging on fresh produce, even items that already have a protective skin such as bananas or avocados.
But RMIT University's sustainable products and packaging expert Simon Lockrey previously told news.com.au that the issue wasn't just about convenience.
"Packaging is generally designed to protect fresh produce and extend shelf life," Dr Lockrey said.
"For instance, some studies have shown large cucumbers to have an extended shelf life from a few days to over 20 days by using plastic film. Other food types have varying performance characteristics along these lines.
"This allows produce to be delivered from further away and last longer so there is more chance it will be purchased and consumed. So, basically, there is a balancing act between packaging and food waste."
Countdown, which is Woolworths' sister chain in NZ, has removed all plastic in the fresh produce section of three stores, offering paper and other biodegradable alternatives instead for the 10-week trial.
"Like all Kiwis, we are incredibly passionate about the environment and reducing the amount of plastic and packaging in our produce section is something we, along with our customers, are keen to see," Countdown sustainability chief Kiri Hannifin said.
A Woolworths spokesperson confirmed to news.com.au the Australian group was keeping an eye on the trial.
"We're committed to reducing our environmental footprint across the Woolworths Group," the company said.
"We'll closely monitor the results from the 10 week trial in our New Zealand supermarkets before determining our next steps with this initiative."