New “Bring Your Own Bag” posters in store windows remind customers to avoid using plastic bags. Store associates have also begun asking customers at the counter whether they need bags. They encourage students, in particular, to put textbooks in their backpacks.
With these measures, plus offering canvas bags for 25 percent off, the stores used approximately 2,500 fewer plastic bags during “book rush,” the busy two weeks at the start of the semester, according to Cindy Breton, associate director for bookstore operations.
The Textbook Center also decreased the number of cardboard boxes it uses by 66 percent by packaging small textbook orders in outdated or otherwise unusable bags rather than boxes.