I WISH the best of luck to Carolyn Russell (Letters, January 16) in her efforts to reverse the excessive and increasing use of plastic packaging in her only local supermarket, the Co-operative in Aberfeldy. Distribution costs must be of relevance in that very rural location, but don’t justify the lack of any vegetables being sold loosely. Here in Balloch on Loch Lomond my only supermarket, also the Co-operative, has quite a long way to go in reducing plastic packaging, but has at least half a dozen of the smaller vegetables available loosely including carrots, onions, peppers and leeks.

On another plastic-related matter, the availability of carrier bags for a small charge at checkouts, my Balloch Co-operative branch certainly earns a lot of plus points.

For some months now, several supermarket chains nationwide only have heavier carrier bags, which must use far more plastic then their earlier ones, aren’t really much stronger or much more reusable, and are not suited to keeping in one’s pockets with casual purchases or other uses in mind. However, Balloch Co-operative has recently introduced a version of its lightweight carrier bag which is “green” in every sense, both in colour and in being compostable.

Perhaps this is a pilot. When visiting the main Co-operative supermarket in Inverness last month, there was no sign of them. On asking, with an unfortunate slip of the tongue, whether they had now introduced these combustible carrier bags which caused frissons of concern prior to correction, there were none to be had.

Could compostable and still reusable carrier bags be an option for other supermarket chain checkouts, and introduced more widely? Let us hope so.

F Greenlaw,

Ledrish Avenue, Balloch,

West Dunbartonshire.