Newfoundland and Labrador plastic bag ban - what you need to know

As of October 1, 2020, businesses in Newfoundland and Labrador will not be permitted to provide or sell plastic retail bags to customers. A plastic retail bag is a bag “made of plastic, including biodegradable or compostable plastic, but does not include a reusable bag”.

The change is being put in place to reduce waste, and to address the environmental damage caused by single-use plastic check-out bags. The regulation applies to all retailers who sell, or offer to sell, goods to the public. 

The ban does not apply to a bag used to:

  • package fruit, vegetables, candy, grains, nuts and other loose bulk food items;
  • package meat, poultry or fish, whether pre-packaged or not;
  • wrap flowers or potted plants;
  • protect prepared foods or bakery goods that are not pre-packaged;  
  • transport live fish;
  • protect newspapers or printed material left at a person's residence or place of business;
  • protect clothes after professional laundering or dry cleaning; or
  • protect used tires taken off vehicles and placed in a person's vehicle.

The sale of bags, including plastic bags, intended for use in a person’s home or business, which are sold in packages of multiple bags, is still permitted.