The Upside of Using Paper Bags

Paper bags are now a major player in Australian businesses and influence a lot of aspects from branding to consumer experience. Australian consumers are highly conscious of the environmental impact of purchasing from businesses and this makes paper bags an important part of business strategy

The Upside of Using Paper Bags

To understand better the importance of paper bags, this blog post will discuss the impact of these reusable bags in creating a sustainable shopping experience for Aussies. 

Global Brands That Switched to Paper Bags


As a widely recognised cosmetics company. L’oreal decided to shift to increase paper usage in its shampoo packaging. They realised that only 30% of plastic containers are recycled worldwide whereas paper has a recycling level of 90%.

They made a positive change by making shampoo bottles from compostable, recyclable and reusable paper. 


With over 37,00 branches in 100 different countries, McDonald’s choice to implement predominantly paper-based packaging for all its food and drinks is commendable considering that it would be more convenient for them to pack food in plastic containers. 

Their Taiwan outlet consumes an estimated 8500 tonnes of FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) - certified packaging annually. McDonald’s aims to achieve 100% fibre-based packaging coming from sustainable sources by 2025.


This tech giant formed a closed-loop supply chain for its paper packaging. Some of the major changes they made are:

  • Reduced packaging size for lesser carbon footprint and shipping cost
  • Replaced its polystyrene padding with 100% recycled paper padding
  • Regular audits of their packaging supplier


Their wide range of products and international shipping logically means that they need a huge amount of packing supplies to accommodate orders worldwide.

With their frustration-free initiative, they give importance to paper packaging for long-distance shipping. They are made from paper and wood derivatives that are biodegradable.

This means that even though the packaging does not reach the recycling station, it will decompose and not cause further harm to the environment. 

Australian Businesses that Shifted to Paper Bags


A major supermarket in Australia, Coles has recently decided to reduce their 25C bag’s height for online deliveries. Their new version of Coles Online Bags has undergone rigorous testing to ensure that it can withstand multiple usage, hold up to six kilos of groceries and qualify for kerbside recycling. 


Australia’s iconic clothing label which has been around since 1948 also decided to shift to paper bags in all their branches nationwide. Sportsgirl is part of the Sussan group of brands and is the first to take an eco-friendly initiative. They use locally manufactured paper bags that are made from premium Kraft recycled paper and can be recycled through kerbside collection. 


The Japanese clothing retailer, concerning Australia’s fight against single-use plastics, adopted the use of eco-friendly paper bags back in 2019. They charged 15c for each bag to encourage them to bring their reusable bags every time they shop at Uniqlo. 


Woolworths Supermarket uses a 70% recycled paper bag that is FSC-certified. They offer four kinds of reusable bags: a 20-cent paper bag, Woolworths Bag for Good, reusable plastic bags made from 80 per cent recycled materials and foldable fabric bags. These are certified by the PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification), assuring customers that they come from reliable sources and have been tested for high quality and durability. 

The Upside of Using Paper Bags

Reduce environmental problems Brown Paper bags can be recycled, reused and properly disposed of. They don’t always end up in landfills because they can be part of composting once shredded. There are also ethical production rules that must be followed to protect forests from being abused. These manufacturing methods also ensure that the bags are sturdy enough for multiple uses. 

Satisfy customer’s needs

A poll conducted by the Australian Packaging Trust Organisation revealed that 80% of consumers are more likely to support businesses that have eco-friendly packaging. Therefore, using recyclable bags can help maintain loyal customers while attracting new ones. Aside from growing your customer base, you can also build trust with your clients. 

Practical Choice

Compared to plastic bags that can get ripped or easily damaged, paper bags are more reliable because of the high quality of materials used. It can hold more items and withstand movements during transit. Also, they are customisable, so you can personalise them to meet your business’s needs at a given time. You don’t need to order different kinds of packaging for every event or occasion. 

Enhance Support of Local Packaging Suppliers

Not only can you boost credibility with your customers when you use paper bags. You also help the local economy and local packaging manufacturers. You can strike a deal with an Australian packaging company that meets the sustainability requirements that you’re looking for and maybe even receive discounts for wholesale orders.

Assess their price, quality and dependability before entering into a contract with them. Also, try to check their certifications by visiting their website or conducting an on-site inspection. The supplier you choose should be capable of an excellent long-term partnership since their performance will also affect your brand’s reputation. 

The widespread adoption of paper bags by businesses in Australia marks a significant step towards a more sustainable shopping experience. 

By embracing paper bags, companies not only reduce their environmental footprint but also cater to the growing demand for eco-friendly packaging among consumers. From global brands like L'oreal and McDonald's to local giants like Coles and Woolworths, the shift to paper bags underscores a commitment to environmental responsibility and customer satisfaction. 

Beyond environmental benefits, paper bags also offer practical advantages such as durability and customizability. Furthermore, by supporting local packaging suppliers, businesses contribute to the resilience of the Australian economy. 

As consumer awareness of environmental issues continues to grow, businesses that prioritise paper bags are poised to thrive, forging stronger connections with environmentally-conscious customers and gaining a competitive edge in the marketplace.