Make a difference – and win R250,000 in prizes

SPAR Eastern Cape’s Angelo Swartz, who will soon take over as managing director, outlines the way forward for Phase II of the STOP Plastic campaign
SPAR Eastern Cape’s Angelo Swartz, who will soon take over as managing director, outlines the way forward for Phase II of the STOP Plastic campaign
Image: Leon Hugo

The next stage of SPAR Eastern Cape’s STOP Plastic campaign was launched this week, with Angelo Swartz – who will soon take over from Conrad Isaac as the SPAR EC managing director – saying they were ready to strengthen their commitment to cleaning up the environment.

There would be a number of incentives in phase two, including R250 000 in prizes for innovative ideas to make a difference, the retailer said.

Since launching the campaign in April 2018 SPAR EC has sold 4.3-million fewer plastic bags compared with the corresponding period the previous year.

However, both Isaac and Swartz agreed they needed to continue their commitment to the project in collaboration with various parties.

To kick-start phase two there will be a promotion on Saturday where customers at SPAR stores will be given a free paper bag for every 10 plastic bags they provide.

“We are going to stay committed to raising public awareness about the situation, not only by driving it through our products but also by telling people why they need to make a difference,” Swartz said.

“We are going to challenge society in general to come up with initiatives that really affect the community.”

“To this effect, a total of R250 000 will be made available for prizes for new ideas that can make a difference.

“We will be calling on corporates, small businesses, schools, tertiary institutions and customers to come up with ideas and to tell us about them.

“In addition, we will continue to work with our suppliers to achieve responsible packaging solutions. It’s not only about the plastic bag, but about all the plastic that is used just once. Plastic does have a place in our lives, but we have to find responsible ways to use it.

“We want to encourage everyone to get involved, to the point where even if it is our competitors. We can’t do this alone and if we are doing something for the right reasons, it takes the commercial aspect out of it.”

Equally important, Swartz said, was to educate the public to make better choices in terms of packaging and using alternatives to the plastic bag.

He said they would be setting up regular promotions with suppliers in which, by buying certain products, customers could qualify for paper bags.

“We don’t want to put all the cost of alternative packaging onto the customer so this will be a way to encourage them to try a better option.”

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