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Local businesses weigh in on voluntary bag ban

EUREKA - The Humboldt County Board of Supervisors motioned to draft a resolution in Tuesday’s supervisor meeting for businesses to voluntarily stop distributing single use plastic bags. We talked with some of those local businesses about what that might mean.

The board's request comes instead of mandating a ban on the bags. In July of 2013, the board voted to create an ordinance banning plastic bags, pending state legislation. But since the state ban is on hold, the ordinance is also on hold. So our supervisors have turned to voluntary efforts as a different route of elimination. Some businesses we talked to are in favor of it, and are actually already implementing it.

“We've been very supportive of that and it's one of the few political issues that we've been involved in. but we feel very strongly, that we need to reduce plastic bags,” Rick Littlefield, president at Eureka Natural Foods said.

But others are against it. They say in our often wet environment, plastic bags protect goods from the water. Plus, some businesses use plastic bags for the opposite reason: to keep the liquids in.

“I use them exclusively to put crab meat and shrimp meat and smaller loose things in that are wet and all the crab gets wrapped in newspaper and put in a plastic bag,” Mark McCulloch, owner of Mr. Fish Seafood, said.