Retail giant Boots has vowed to ditch plastic bags in all its stores by next year, replacing them with paper ones.
The company said 53 stores will lose plastic bags at checkouts from Monday, with all 2,485 sites only offering customers paper bags from early next year.
However, Boots will continue to charge customers for the new unbleached brown bags, despite them not falling under the plastic bag tax.
The decision means 900 tonnes of plastic will be removed from stores as a result.
Hundreds of companies have already made pledges to cut back the amount of plastic and packaging they use.
Earlier this month, Waitrose unveiled a new “plastic-free” store, McDonald’s is replacing plastic straws with paper ones, and supermarket Iceland has promised to end plastic packaging from own-label products by 2023.
Starbucks has joined in too, promising to ditch plastic straws by 2020, a pledge that it says will eliminate the use of more than one billion plastic straws per year.
But companies aren’t the only ones moving to eradicate single-use plastics, governments too are joining in.
Canada recently pledged to ban single-use plastics by 2021 after the European Union approved legislation promising the same thing.
The British government has also made a pledge to ban plastic straws, plastic drinks stirrers and plastic cotton buds in England from April 2020.
It comes as part of a worldwide push to cut single-use plastics which are damaging the environment and killing animals.
Boots Managing director Seb James said: “There is no doubt that our customers expect us to act and this change signifies a huge step away from our reliance on plastic.”
Helen Normoyle, director of marketing at Boots, said: “Our new paper bags have been carefully tested to make sure that, over their entire lifecycle, they are better for the environment”.
The recycled brown bags cost 5p, 7p and 10p, depending on size, and the company said all profits will be donated to BBC Children in Need.