Thursday, October 26, 2006

Bag lady

We do most of our food shopping at Albertons, a West coast chain of supermarkets. A while back when we were watching the cashier beep our items through the scanner, I casually picked up a bag and started putting groceries in the cart.

"How helpful, we should hire you!"

I blinked. "Sorry?"

The cashier grinned, "we should hire you, we need good baggers like you! You make my job easier"

And then I remembered that here, you don't bag your own groceries. Or rather, you don't have to, as someone will come along and do it for you. It all feels rather lazy to me, and sometimes I just grab a bag and start bagging for myself, much to the surprise of the cashiers.

I quite like the set-up I saw in Germany, in places like real. There are no wads of plastic bags waiting for you at the check out. You have to bring your own bags -- canvas, plastic, whatever you like -- and bag all your items yourself. Very eco-friendly, a lot of stores would benefit from introducing this policy.

I wonder how it works in other countries?


At 10/26/2006 11:34 PM, Anonymous Philip Newton said...

They usually still have bags -- typically both plastic and cloth -- near the cash register, but you have to pay for them.

So many people will just grab a plastic bag or two and put them on the conveyor belt with their shopping and pay for them as well, though some people bring reusable bags.

Paper bags are nearly unheard-of in Germany, though; I've only seen them in Marktkauf.

At 10/27/2006 1:12 AM, Blogger Otana said...

Ah of course, now I remember that. It's been a while since I was in Germany. Thanks for the reminder!

At 10/27/2006 8:28 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I remember going into a German grocery store when I had lived there a long time ago, and I did remember the fact that you did have to bring your own bags. I'd think this would be a good idea here in the US. It would save money.

I'm so inclined to bag my own groceries when I go out shopping because I do it all the time where I work...

-Geoni (aka Yaji)

At 10/29/2006 10:20 PM, Blogger Otana said...

All this talk about bags is making me miss Germany groceries. I miss buying teewurst and onion bread on the way home from work.


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