Who invented the plastic bag?
Swedish engineer Sten Gustaf Thulin invented the modern plastic bag in 1965. Thulin officially brought the bag to the world after a packaging company he worked for brought it to market.
Believe it or not, Thulin created the plastic bag to help protect the environment! At the time, paper bags were the bag of choice. This meant that a lot of trees were being cut down so that people could take items home from the store and throw the bags in the trash. Thulin was determined to create an alternative that people could use over and over again. Thus, the plastic bag was born!
Where did the plastic bag originate?
The plastic bag originally originated in Sweden after the engineer was awarded a design patent. While you might think this means that Sweden became a major plastic bag manufacturer, it wasn’t! It wasn’t until Mobil Chemical made its own bags in the United States that plastic bags began to be mass produced.
Even after the first introduction of plastic bags, they were not well received by grocery store employees. Static electricity caused the bags to stick together, which meant employees needed to spend more time bagging groceries. The bags became more popular after workers got used to opening them and incorporating them into their daily routines. Sometimes all it takes is a little persistence!
Why did we start using plastic bags?
We started using plastic bags in the 80s because they were cheaper than paper bags. Shoppers also liked plastic bags because they had handles, something paper bags didn’t have at the time.
Between the savings they offer grocery chains and the extra convenience they offer consumers, the choice is clear: plastic bags are the better choice!
What is the future for plastic bags?
The COVID-19 pandemic has sparked a resurgence in plastic bag use. For cleanliness and convenience, businesses such as restaurants, pharmacies and meat markets will continue to use plastic bags.
Reusable bags are great for a quick trip to the grocery store, but you probably won’t see restaurants putting takeout orders in them anytime soon. For now, plastic bags still have a place in our daily lives!
Ordering takeout and running to the drugstore just wouldn’t be the same at all without plastic bags. They make our shopping trips both convenient and safe! We may not know exactly what the future holds for plastic bags, but we wouldn’t have made it this far without the important role they have played in our history.
For questions about plastic bags, please feel free to contact us and we’ll be very happy to help you!