Page 32 - MarketTimesAugust2019
P. 32

 Chesham and Amersham
markets have a greener
future in
the bag
  THE Amersham and Chesham Market Traders Co-operative is trailblazing a greener way of shopping after investing in environmentally friendly bags including 100,000 bio-degradable plastic bags.
The innovative scheme, which has made the national news, has been warmly embraced by traders, shoppers and Chiltern District and Chesham councils.
Danny Wadmore, who sells household goods on both markets and also helps run the co- operative, said, like many people, the traders and their loyal customers had become increasingly concerned about the damage plastic was doing to the environment.
“We noticed a number of shoppers were refusing plastic bags and we heard about some traders in Cambridge who were using bio- degradable ones,” Danny said.
After some internet research they found the best suppliers and Danny and a couple of traders who run the co-operative with him decided to take the bull by the horns.
“It helped that we are a co-operative running the markets for ourselves,” Danny said.
The traders formed the co-operative nine years ago and since then the Tuesday market in Amersham and the Wednesday and Saturday markets in nearby Chesham have gone from strength to strength.
“About 80 per cent of the traders were on board initially. The co-operative had the £4,500 investment and when we told the two councils involved what we were planning to do they were delighted. As we run the markets there was no council red tape to hold us up so we went for it.”
They invested in 100,000 of the plastic bags which have a special ingredient which makes them bio-degrade within 60 days of being exposed to the sunlight, leaving no residue. They also acquired jute bags which they are giving away to shoppers and a large quantity of paper bags.
A normal plastic bag takes 1,000 years to degrade, causing untold harm to the environment

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