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05/19/2022

Target, CVS pilot reusable bag program

Dan Berthiaume
Senior Editor, Technology
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Target and CVS are part of a reusable bag initiative.

Shoppers at select Target and CVS stores can now check out reusable bags at in-store kiosks and return them for fresh ones during their next shopping trip.

Starting in May 2022, select CVS Pharmacy and Target stores across New Jersey are piloting a reusable bag systems from Goatote, a kiosk system that provides easy access to clean reusable bags, offering a reusable alternative for guests that forgot their own reusable bag. Goatote reusable bag kiosks are available in stores across Jersey City, Howell Township, Watchung, North Plainfield, Wall, and Marlton.

For these pilots, Goatote is partnering with 99Bridges for the technology platform that powers its reusable bag system. In 2021, Goatote was one of nine winners of a contest, the “Beyond the Bag” initiative, run by the Center for the Circular Economy at Closed Loop Partners. With founding partners CVS Health, Target and Walmart, the Center is aiming to reinvent the single-use plastic retail bag, with the goal of identifying, piloting and implementing innovative alternative designs for the current single-use retail bag. 

Pilots of the system began in August 2021. The rollout in New Jersey builds upon those pilots. In addition, Walmart has piloted the Goatote system; as well as a solution called Fill It Forward, a mobile app and tag that connects to a reusable bag customers already own. 

"We're excited to see Goatote and 99Bridges' progress and continued work with the Consortium to Reinvent the Retail Bag Partners, such as CVS Health and Target. Their work today builds on the collaboration established through the Consortium, and the collective insights gained from the Beyond the Bag pilots, paving the path forward for more circular bag solutions," said Kate Daly, managing director of the Center for the Circular Economy at Closed Loop Partners. "As the demand for reusable bag alternatives rises, especially amidst recent policy changes and a growing plastic waste crisis, we look forward to seeing continued impact on the ground, as innovators further develop and grow reusable bag solutions."

"Testing these new solutions that can replace the single-use plastic retail bag builds on our deep commitment to creating a more sustainable world," said Sheryl Burke, senior VP of corporate social responsibility, CVS Health. "Over the last year, we've worked collaboratively with leading retailers and innovators to pilot these new solutions, and we're excited to bring our customers in New Jersey along on this journey."

"Our guests are feeling the growing burden of waste, and that includes single-use plastic retail bags," said Amanda Nusz, senior VP of corporate responsibility, Target. "Thanks to Beyond the Bag pilot innovators like Goatote, and the collective efforts of this consortium, we're able to build circular capabilities in this space and bring our guests along with us, asking them to help co-create the sustainable and affordable solutions we know we need. We're grateful to continue these important collaborations."

Find store locations and pricing to use Goatote’s reusable bag kiosks here. Learn more about the Center's work here.