The current Covid-19 crisis may have dominated the headlines for the last few months but environmental concerns particularly surrounding plastic waste have not diminished. Andover’s very own zero waste shop, based at The Fairground in Weyhill has been helping consumers make the change to package free shopping for the last 2 ½ years and has now moved to bigger premises on the site to extend the range of products available.
The idea behind a zero-waste shop is that you bring your own containers and purchase what you need. The range includes household cleaning, shampoo, body wash, flours, nuts, seeds, dried fruit and snacks, coffee and tea, herbs and spices as well as providing a range of plastic free swaps like washable make-up pads and safety razors.
The suppliers are chosen based on their company ethics and practices including co-operative food wholesalers as well as local suppliers encouraging customers to think about the ethics and provenance behind their shopping.
This year, so far, has seen 72,904 refills in the shop. This means over 72,000 individual pieces of single use plastic packaging have not ended up in landfill, incinerated or recycled.
Sarah Lovejoy, the owner of Love + Joy Home encourages people to make small changes, starting with a couple of easy swaps like washing up liquid which most of us already have a bottle for. Like anything, it’s all about changing habits. It’s surprisingly easy and addictive once you make the change and you can see the amount of rubbish reducing in your bins. The other advantage is that you can buy as much or as little as you need helping to reduce the growing problem of food waste and saving on your household bills.
So if you are considering how you reduce your household waste a visit to a zero waste shop is a must. With more opening up around the country it is becoming the “normal” way to shop for many of us and offering consumers a choice to make a difference. The perception that they are expensive is misleading as prices are often lower than branded equivalents and you only need to buy what you need.