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Sonoma County Waste Management Agency

Carryout Bag Reduction

bring your own bag
Made Local

Locally made reusable shopping bag project

Get and Agency Bag

To help support local jobs and to help residents get in the habit of bringing their own bag, the Sonoma County Waste Management Agency has contracted with BPE-USA , Santa Rosa, to produce 10,000 reusable shopping bags. Bags are made from locally sourced overstock materials.

Funding comes from the Sonoma County Waste Management Agency with support from community organizations, individuals and businesses.

City of Santa RosaCity of PetalumaSoiland- Rocks, soil, compostWhole FoodsAlvarado Street BakeryEconomic Development BoardThe Ratto GroupCounty of Sonoma Human ServiceIndustrial Carting

Sonoma Garbage Collectors

Individual Sponsors
June Michaels

Bring Your Own Bag graphic

Take your bag along to the store.

To address the growing problem of carryout bag waste, on February 19, 2014 the cities and the County members of the Sonoma County Waste Management Agency passed Ordinance No. 2014-2 Establishing a Waste Reduction Program for Carryout Bags (PDF: 33 kB) and a related administrative penalties ordinance. (PDF: 39 kB).If you are a grocery store or retail establishment subject to the ordinance, visit the Business Carryout Bags Ordinance page.

What shoppers need to know about the ordinance:

  • Beginning September 1, 2014, single-use plastic bags will no longer be available at all grocery and retail stores in Sonoma County. 
  • Stores must charge a minimum of  10¢  for each paper bag.
  • The Waste Reduction Program for Carryout Bags Ordinance (PDF: 33 kB) is intended to reduce litter, keep plastic bagas out of local waterways, and encourage the use of reusable bags.

What's excluded from the ordinance:

  • Bags used for produce, bulk foods and meats, bags used to hold prescription medications from a pharmacy, and bags used to segregate food or merchandise from each other.

Tips for remembering your bag when shopping

I've got a bag habit
  • Put your bags where you will use them, such as in the car, on the doorknob,  in your purse  or backpack.
  • Is your bag in your cart or basket? As you enter a store make sure you have a bag. If you forgot, make the effort to go back and get it.
  • Get bags that match your style. You’ll use your bags more if you enjoy them.
  • Put your kids in charge of remembering.

Bag facts

Historic use of plastic bags

  • 18.2 billion estimated 2008 California plastic carryout bag use.  In 2008, the US EPA estimated the plastic bag recover rate at 9.8%.
  • 232 million estimated 2008 Sonoma County plastic bag use--that’s 1.3 plastic bags per Sonoma County resident per day.

Historic use of paper bags

  • 3.6 billion estimated 2008 California paper carryout bag use. In 2008, the US EPA estimated the paper bag recover rate at 37.6%.
  • 46 million estimated 2008 Sonoma County paper bag use--that's .25 paper bags per Sonoma County resident per day.

2.12 Estimated number of times these Sonoma County bags would wrap around the Earth’s equator each year if arranged side-by-side

Get an Agency bag: two styles available

two styles of bagsTo help you get in the habit of using reusable bags when shopping, Agency bags will be available at the following events. A $1 donation is requested for locally-made fabric bags (bag photo on the left) and a 50¢ donation is requested for recycled reusable plastic bags (bag photo on the right). A variety of colors are available. While supplies last.

July 2014

July 24-31 Santa Rosa Sonoma County Fair (in the Grace Pavilion) 11am - 10pm

August 2014

August 1-10 Santa Rosa Sonoma County Fair (in the Grace Pavilion) 11am - 10pm

September 2014

September 6 Cloverdale 20th Annual Cloverdale Car and Motorcycle Show 10am - 3pm
September 13 Santa Rosa Mexican Independence Day Celebration at the Wells Fargo Center 1pm - 6pm
September 14 Sonoma Mexican Independence Celebration, Sonoma Plaza 11am - 5pm

October 2014

October 2 Petaluma Petaluma Business Expo 4pm - 7pm
October 5 Windsor Binational Health Week Event
Our Lady of Guadalupe Catholic Church
8400 Old Redwood Hwy
1pm - 3pm
October 5 Glen Ellen Beauty Ranch Sustainability Farm Festival
Jack London State Park
10:30pm - 4pm
October 6 Rohnert Park Rohnert Park Community Health and Safety Fair 10am - 2pm
October 11 Sonoma Sonoma Valley Health Fair 11am - 4pm
October 12 Guerneville Guerneville Health Fair
Guerneville School District
14630 Armstrong Wood Road, Guerneville
1pm – 4pm
October 19 Cloverdale Cloverdale Health Fair 1:30pm - 4:30pm
October 19 Santa Rosa Santa Rosa Health Fair
Resurrection Catholic Church (Community Room)
303 Stony Point Rd, Santa Rosa
1pm - 4pm
October 26 Sonoma Halloween Carnival at el Verano School in Sonoma 12pm – 4pm

November 2014

November 1 Santa Rosa End of the Harvest Fair 10am-3pm
November 15 Santa Rosa Santa Rosa Health Fair
Sonoma County Fairgrounds
1350 Bennett Valley Rd, Santa Rosa


Sonoma County Waste Management Agency ● 2300 County Center Drive, Suite B-100 ● Santa Rosa, CA 95403