New Two Sides Infographic Shows Why Paper Bags are The Natural Choice

Two Sides North America today released an engaging new infographic that shows why paper bags, because of their inherent renewable and recyclable attributes, are an attractive, practical and natural alternative to plastic bags.

Citing authoritative sources, this infographic addresses the growing concern about the overuse of plastic bags and in particular, their contribution to marine litter. For example, according to the World Resources institute, each year about 8 million metric tons of plastic litter ends up in the ocean, where it can harm fish and wildlife and, once it enters the food chain, threaten human health. The National Conference of State Legislatures reports that several states have banned single-use plastic bags and hundreds of municipalities have banned or imposed fees on their use, and the Office of the Prime Minister has announced that Canada expects to ban all single-use plastics, including plastic bags, as early as 2021.

The infographic also highlights some of the key reasons why paper bags are a sustainable alternative.

  • Compared to other materials, paper-based goods produced in a sustainable manner can be a wise choice because they come from a renewable resource – trees, the product of sunlight, soil, nutrients and water (World Resources Institute).
  • Paper is one of the most recycled materials in North America with a recovery rate of 68% in the United States and 70% in Canada (American Forest and Paper Association, Forest Products Association of Canada).
  • In a 2019 survey in the United States and Canada, consumers ranked paper as the second most environmentally friendly material (behind wood) out of 8 different materials and products. Plastics ranked seventh (Toluna and Two Sides).

“As all concerned strive to reduce unnecessary packaging as part of a circular, less wasteful economy, businesses and consumers can be confident that using paper bags is a responsible choice,” says Two Sides North America President Phil Riebel. “The raw material used for paper bags made in the U.S. and Canada comes from sustainably managed forests where trees are grown, harvested and regrown in accordance with responsible forest management practices, environmental regulations and globally recognized forest certification standards, and the U.S. and Canada are world leaders in paper recycling. That’s why paper bags are a natural choice.”

Download the new Two Sides new infographic here.

About Two Sides 

Two Sides North America is an independent, non-profit organization, and is part of the Two Sides global network which includes more than 600 member companies across North America, South America, Europe, Australia and South Africa. Our member companies span the Graphic Communications and Paper-based Packaging value chain, including forestry, pulp, paper, paper-based packaging, chemicals and inks, pre-press, press, finishing, printing, publishing, envelopes and postal operations. For more information about Two Sides North America, visit us at and follow us on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter.

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