To reduce the use of plastic bags in daily life, people in rural areas across the country have been encouraged to use baskets when going shopping.

Shoppers carrying single-use plastic bags of various kinds and shapes is a normal scene at any markets in Vietnam. But here at a local market in Hai Duong province, almost all shoppers go with their own baskets.

Tran Thi Huyen, a local resident in Quyet Thang commune, Thanh Ha district, Hai Duong province: "For people in rural areas, using baskets has become common for a long time. It is much better for the environment using baskets when shopping. Plastic bags cannot decompose completely and harming the environment."

Each local resident once used as many as seven plastic bags every time going shopping. Now, with the encouragement of the local women’s union, many have get used to carrying baskets and saying no to single-use plastic bags.

Hoang Thi Luot, a local resident in Quyet Thang commune, Thanh Ha district, Hai Duong province: "It’s not good for the food being wrapped in plastic bags. With the baskets, the food will be kept fresher and longer."

Dong Thi Nhuan, Chairwoman of Women’s Union, Quyet Thang commune: "Over the last two years, we have encouraged the union’s members to use baskets instead of plastic bags, to protect the environment. Burning plastic bags release unpleasant smell and the smoke harms the environment."

Shopping with your own basket is among the measures to reduce pollution caused by plastic bags. However, more involvement of the community and local authorities is needed to effectively address the problem.-VNA