Reusable polyester bags are reducing our footprint

Colruyt Group is the first Belgian retailer to introduce reusable bags for loose fruit and vegetables as the only alternative to single use bags. The reusable bags are made of polyester, are extremely strong and can be put in the washing machine. The decision to use polyester wasn’t taken lightly: we considered the total environmental impact of various materials over their entire life cycle. The LCA assessment (life-cycle analysis) showed that polyester scores considerably better than other materials.

Cradle-to-grave analysis

An LCA assessment maps the full environmental impact, from raw materials to end-of-use. We compared polyester with single use paper and reusable cotton in terms of raw materials, production, transport, use, etc. We then came to the scientific conclusion that a polyester bag has the lowest total impact according to the majority of standards, such as global warming, use of land, water pollution, use of raw materials, etc.

Set of 5 reusable bags

A well-considered choice

After reusing the bag 9 times, our polyester bag is already more sustainable than a single use paper bag which is heavier and requires a lot more energy to produce. Polyester also scores better than cotton, due in part to the large amount of water and pesticides used to grow cotton. And a polyester bag can be used hundreds of times without wearing out.

Why do we want to increase sustainability?

In California, single use plastic bags were banned in 2014. Volunteers in clean-up operations are now removing 72% fewer bags from the beaches. This shows that avoiding single use bags definitely makes a difference. That's why we want to offer our customers the most sustainable solution. BecauseOVAM’s waste study shows that at least 70% of those surveyed are regularly using the reusable bags. It seems that our customers are more than ready for it.

Read more about our reusable bags
Bell peppers in reusable bag

With this initiative, we contribute to the following Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.

Responsible consumption & production Climate action