Green Okinawa (7) Buy and re-use your own shopping basket to save time and avoid plastic bags

Dear OISTers,

The Resource Center is putting together information and recommendations on how to be environmentally friendly in Okinawa. Different topics are posted on the OIST Resource Center page called 'Green Okinawa'. We are grateful for your inputs. Please get in touch with suggestions of your own. You can share your tips/comments from here:

Here is one from us.

At most major supermarkets customers can buy and re-use their own shopping basket. These baskets are called ‘My Baskets’.  My Baskets save time at the checkout and allow customers to easily take their supermarket shopping home without needing plastic bags.

At San A, a My Basket currently costs 362 JPY (+VAT) and it can accommodate two shopping bags worth of items.  AEON Ryukyu, AEON shopping centres and MaxValu also sells My Baskets for about 400 JPY. At the time of writing (June 2020), My Baskets are not available at AEON BIG or Kanehide.

  • My baskets at San-A: They are noticeable as the colour of My Baskets are green while normal baskets are yellow. They are normally stacked near the cashiers, or near the entrance.
  • My Baskets at AEON: You can choose the colour of your My Basket from black, green, and pink. These baskets are normally stacked near the cashiers or the entrance of the store. (you may not choose colours at MaxValu as they may only have one colour option)

To buy a My Basket, you can either take a My Basket from the stack near the cashier, or the entrance and then pay for it along with the other items. Or you can tell the cashier that you would like to buy a My basket.

“I would like "My basket", please”  「マイバスケット一つください」

Our recommendation is to put all your items in a normal basket whilst you do your shopping, and then when you pay, give the cashier your empty green My Basket so she or he can easily load it up.

This Green Okinawa post was developed in collaboration between Yoshimasa Nakamura (OIST Resource Center) and Kate Whitfield.

Let us know if you are enjoying these Green Okinawa posts and please submit your own environmentally friendly recommendations for living in Okinawa from here.

Read previous Green Okinawa posts here

Tips/comments shared by the OIST community members

Name: Anonymous

Dear Green Okinawa team, thanks a lot for the information on the 'my basket'! Last time I waited at the cashier at Max Value while the cashier was scanning my products, I recognised them close to the entrance/exit (and therefor also near cash desks). I quickly got 2 and handed them to the cashier. So convenient that he places the products in there immediately! I always bring (huge European style) shopping bags to the supermarket, convenient for carrying, but not for giving to the cashier for packing. Also not all cashdesk pack in your own bag. But they will always pack in the 'my basket'. After, I put them back on the cart and drove them all the way to my
car. Without reading the article I would not have recognised them! The 'my baskets' are slightly bigger than the normal ones, so now when I go shopping I take a cart, put 'my basket' on it and in that the supermarket baskets.