New line launches as Japan starts push to reduce the use of disposable plastic shopping bags.

A big change to shopping in Japan this summer is that many chains are making a shift away from plastic bags for customers purchases. Once a free and automatic part of procuring supplies at convenience, drug, and grocery stores, they’re increasingly coming with a small surcharge, plus the awkwardness of having to tell the clerk that yes, you do want a bag, if you didn’t bring your own reusable one.

It’s a change that’s sure to be appreciated by Mother Earth, and also of course forest spirits like Totoro, which makes the Studio Ghibli anime star an apt choice for a new line of sturdy, reusable bags that can substitute for plastic ones.

Three different styles are on offer, with the largest being the Big Totoro Kinchaku Type, which puts the beloved Ghibli mascot on a durable polyester bag with a drawstring reminiscent of traditional Japanese kinchaku cloth handbags.

▼ The Big Totoro Kinchaku Type is 41 centimeters (16.1 inches) tall and priced at 1,400 yen (US$13).

If you want something a little more compact, there’s also a Medium Totoro Kinchaku Type, in the midsize version’s customary blue color, that’s 31 centimeters tall and just 1,100 yen.

In addition to being subtle yet adorable, both of these bags are water-repellant on their outside surfaces, and waterproof on their inner ones, to help keep things dry during summer squalls.

Finally, there’s the top-of-the-line Big Totoro Clear Bag Kinchaku, for 1,700 yen.

At 34 centimeters tall, it occupies the middle-ground in carrying capacity, but it’s actually two bags in one, as you get both a sea green Totoro kinchaku-style bag and a clear one too.

▼ And yes, even the clear bag has Totoro on it!

Produced by Saitama-based merchandiser Ensky, all three designs are being offered through, of all places, the online JP Post (Japan post office) shop here.

Source: PR Wire via IT Media
Images: PR Wire
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