- Associated Press - Tuesday, September 29, 2015

HOUSTON (AP) - The Houston Zoo has announced that it will no longer use plastic bags in its two gift shops, instead opting for reusable bags.

Officials said in a statement Monday the zoo’s aim in its partnership with Service Systems Associates is to keep some 80,000 plastic bags from entering landfills.

According to the zoo, a test program started in July and officials said enough patrons took part to make the change permanent. Zoo officials said they will expand a line of reusable canvas bags featuring depictions of zoo animals.

Peter Riger, vice president of wildlife conservation for the Houston Zoo, said he hopes the change at the zoo will serve as an example for other companies.

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