Reusable Bag Ordinance

Single-Use Bag Reduction Ordinance
The Alameda County Waste Management Authority has passed an ordinance which bans single-use carryout bags throughout Alameda County. In general, this applies to any store that sells packaged food. This ordinance took effect on January 1, 2013. Recycled content paper bags may be provided by the retailer, but each business must charge a minimum price of $0.10 for each bag. (The $0.10 fee remains with the retailer to recover costs.)

Which retailers are required to participate?
  • Full-line, self-service retail stores with gross annual sales of $2 million, or more, that sell a line of dry grocery, canned goods, or non-food items and some perishable items; or
  • Stores of at least 10,000 square feet of retail space that generate sales or use tax and have a licensed pharmacy; or
  • A drug store, pharmacy, supermarket, grocery store, convenience food store, food mart, or other entity engaged in the retail sale of goods that include milk, bread, soda, and snack foods, including those stores with a Type 20 or 21 liquor license.
Which retailers are not required to participate?
  • Restaurants
  • Take-out food establishments
  • Retail stores not selling packaged food
  • Charitable thrift stores
Retail stores will be allowed to provide recycled content paper bags at no cost to customers participating in the WIC and Supplemental Food programs. In addition, stores may provide free reusable bags to customers if they are part of a promotion that is limited in time and done infrequently. For more information about the bag ban, check out the Bag Ban FAQ. For the complete ordinance, go to Single Use Bag Ban Ordinance.