Please tell us a little about you and your store.
For a long time I have believed in the benefits an organic and natural lifestyle, trying to shop locally with ethics and the environment in mind.
When I came across Earth.Food.Love’s website 18 months ago, I was immediately captivated by the idea of an organic food shop with no packaging and wanted to start a version of this fantastic enterprise in my home town.
Packaging Not Included sells organic food, cleaning products and personal care items. The food is dispensed straight into your own containers, eliminating the need for any unnecessary packaging.
Did you decide to go zero waste and what or who inspired you? Have you always been zero waste?
Yes, I strive to be zero waste. This has been a gradual process as I think there are many strands to leading a zero waste life. I didn’t set out to be zero waste, it has just developed as I have gone along. I realised the importance of what we put into our bodies and how our individual actions influence and impact upon other people and our planet. I don’t measure the waste that I create and I try not to chastise myself when I get things wrong.
I think the process went something like this: Eating organic (which I still value most highly), cooking from scratch, using natural hair and skin care products, buying less and better quality, looking in to the ethics of what I buy, switching to a green energy supplier, making and baking, wearing natural fabrics, trying to conserve energy, reusing, repairing, trying not to use disposable things (tissues, cotton wool pads, cling film, tampons), using less single use plastic, using the car less, trying to use no single use plastic, trying not to create any landfill waste at all. This might not be quite the right order, but you get the idea hopefully.
What’s been the most challenging or surprising thing about running a zero waste store?
Setting up a business on your own is very hard work. That wasn’t a surprise, but the time it takes is huge.
What is the biggest problem with zero waste shopping at the moment?
It isn’t mainstream enough. It needs to be as easy as possible so that as many people as possible can embrace the concept. There need to be some big legislative changes to force the hands of big companies to do more.
What products do your customers love?
Customers love the peanut butter machine (organic vegan chocolate hazelnut butter on Sundays!)
Our local bread from Rudies, honey on tap and Owens coffee have also been incredibly popular. The natural deodorants from Kutis and the Sew and Sparkle reusable facial pads have also been flying out of the door.
What product do you love most? Again, links and show us in video if using video.
I love the unpackaged, organic fruit and veg from Purton House Organics
What’s your tactic for influencing people about why they should go zero waste?
Just leading by example, giving information and talking to people openly and honestly.
Do you think one person living zero waste really makes a difference?
Yes. Individual actions add up to a huge collective difference. You can’t wait for someone else to change things. BE THE CHANGE.
What one item do you never leave home without? Show if possible and link if available.
One of my Organic-Ally hankies! Good for nose, face, fingers, chops etc etc! I used to get through a lot of tissues.
What are your tips for anyone thinking about going zero waste? Where should they start?
Think about what matters to you most and change that one thing first. If you are anything like me, you will find that one thing leads to another and your first change will set off a chain reaction.
7 Hughenden Yard
Wiltshire SN18 1LT