Plastic bag ban — for retailers

The plastic shopping bag ban applies to all retailers in Queensland for in-store and online sales from 1 July 2018.

The Waste Reduction and Recycling Amendment Act 2017 defines a retailer as “a person who sells goods in trade or commerce”. Supermarkets, greengrocers, bakeries, chemists, restaurants and clothes stores, as well as market-stall holders and organisations which supply plastic shopping bags, are included in the ban.

Under the ban, retailers are no longer allowed to supply shoppers with single-use lightweight plastic shopping bags under 35 microns, for free or at a charge. This includes compostable, degradable and biodegradable plastic shopping bags.

Retailers may choose to provide and charge for alternative bags, which can include reusable heavy-duty plastic bags, woven polypropylene 'green' bags, paper or other bags. Shoppers can also bring their own bag or trolley.

A retailer who is found to be supplying the banned bags after 1 July 2018 may be fined 50 penalty points per offence.

A person, such as a supplier, who is found to be providing misleading information about plastic bags may also be fined 50 penalty points per offence.

The National Retail Association (NRA) continues to conduct awareness audits with retailers. If any retailer has questions about their bags or wishes to arrange for their bags to be tested, please visit or call the National Retail Association’s Retail Hotline on 1800 RETAIL (738 245).