State law (SB 270) prohibits many stores in the City of San Diego from providing single-use plastic carryout bags to their customers, and requires those stores to charge at least $0.10 for recycled paper carryout bags and reusable bags.
The state law affects most grocery stores, retail stores with a pharmacy, convenience stores, food marts, and liquor stores. See Public Resources Code section 42280, et seq. for specific information regarding regulated stores.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Governor of California temporarily suspended the requirements of SB 270 but the law is back in place. Many grocery stores, while allowing reusable bags by law, are requiring customers to bag their own groceries if using their own reusable bags. Inquire at your local store for details on their procedures.
SB 270 reduces the over 192 million single-use plastic carryout bags previously distributed in California every week. These bags, each used for an average of 12 minutes, often end up in streets, canyons, trees, landfills, storm drains, and eventually the ocean.
Single-use carryout bag reduction laws have been proven to reduce the litter and other environmental impacts associated with single-use plastic bags. Check out our tips about types of reusable bags, ways you can remember your bags when you go to the store, how to clean your bags, and how to make your own bag for free with an old T-shirt!