A 5p single-use plastic carrier bag tax was introduced in England in October 2015. From 21 May 2021, it was increased to 10p and extended to all retailers, regardless of size. 

  • From 5 October 2015 large retailers in England had to charge a minimum of 5p for single-use carrier bags, bringing them into line with Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. 
  • From 21 May 2021, this charge was increased to 10p per bag and extended to all retailers, regardless of size. 
  • Large retailers, (those with more than 250 employees) are required to make annual sales reports to the Department for Environmental Foods and Rural Affairs (DEFRA).

See Carrier Bag Tax for further details.

Useful guides on this topic

Carrier Bag Tax
A 5p single-use plastic carrier bag tax was introduced in England in October 2015. From 21 May 2021, it was increased to 10p and extended to all retailers, regardless of size. 

English plastic bag charge (VAT)
This is a freeview 'At a glance' guide to VAT and the English carrier bag tax.

Scottish plastic bag charge (VAT)
What is the carrier bag charge? Who does it apply to? Are small businesses subject to the plastic bag tax?

Plastic Packaging Tax
What is Plastic Packaging Tax? Who does it apply to? Are small businesses subject to Plastic Packaging Tax?


Squirrel ad


Are you enjoying our content? 

Thousands of accountants and advisers and their clients use rossmartin.co.uk as their primary TAX resource.

Register now to receive our FREE weekly SME Tax News update