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Downtown Farmers Market Will Go Plastic Bag Free This Summer

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Courtesy Downtown Alliance
The Downtown Farmers Market

Regular visitors to Salt Lake City’s Downtown Farmers Market may notice something missing this summer: market organizers are banning plastic bags.

Market Director Alison Einerson says the decision to stop using single-use plastic bags at the market is part of a national trend.

"We’re going to ask customers to bring their own bags," Einerson says. "Everybody has that area in the back of their car where all of their bags are, and they sometimes just forget to grab them."

For those without reusable bags, The Downtown Alliance has partnered with SelectHealth and LDS Hospital to provide thousands of free bags to market shoppers.

Einerson estimates the ban will keep 1 million single-use plastic bags out of the waste stream.

But she says the transition to a plastic-free farmers market will be easy for some vendors and harder for others, so there are some exceptions. Farmers will still be able to give out paper bags as well as zip-top plastic bags, "for cut greens and herbs," explains Einerson. "And the reason is most people take those home and use them again."

Einerson says the decision is part of the market’s mission to reduce waste.

"Until we get people to start thinking about their personal choices and their personal waste, we’re not going to see any change and we need to all be doing what we can," she says. "Every little bit that we can do does create huge impact and huge change, and that’s what we’re going for."

The Downtown Farmers Market opens on Saturday, June 10.

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