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The focus on plastic pollution in recent years has highlighted the negative impact that excessive plastic packaging has on the environment.
A significant amount of consumer plastic ends up in the ocean. Even when it goes to landfill, tonnes gets blown into nearby waterways or rivers and then ends up in the sea.
In a bid to minimise plastic use, the growing and very welcome phenomenon of zero-waste shopping has taken off.
What is zero-waste shopping?
We’ve all experienced excessive plastic wrap or multiple layers of packaging on our grocery shopping. Even putting our fruit and veg in a plastic bag to be weighed feels wasteful.
Zero-waste shopping aims to eliminate this excess.
Increasingly, people are careful about what products they buy.
In some stores, customers can take their own containers for produce like cheese, meat and veggies in an attempt to eliminate any waste from their purchases.
Zero-waste shopping in South Africa
The number of plastic- and packaging-free options is growing daily. There are now entire shops dedicated to zero-waste shopping.
These shops offer unpackaged produce and customers take their own containers for everything from flour and sugar to eggs and dairy.
Zero-waste shops in Cape Town
Nude Foods in Constitution Street offers completely plastic-free shopping with bulk wholefoods being sold by weight.
Shop Zero offers a range of food products by the kilo as well as zero-waste cleaning products. It also stocks jars and bottles to transport your goods.
This stall at the regular Wednesday and Saturday Earth Fair Market has packaging-free polenta, couscous, beans, rice, quinoa and more.
Unpacked Pantry has grains and legumes, as well as fresh produce like veggies, milk and yoghurt. It also sells a range of reusable containers, including tiffin tins.
Zero-waste shops in Jo’burg
The Refillery is a completely plastic-free grocery store in Cedar Square. It has a wide range of foodstuffs that are sold by weight.
The SEK Collective has a range of grains, nuts and legumes for sale by weight. It also stocks cleaning products and milk in returnable glass bottles.
You can find Replenish at various markets around Jo’burg. It stocks plastic-free cleaning utensils, toothbrushes, safety razors and produce bags.
Unwrapped is based in Randburg but it’s an online zero-waste store where you can order subscription boxes, grains and pulses, nuts, coffees and teas, and oils.
Zero-waste shops in Durban
Azikho is a health and wellness emporium on Garlicke Drive that stock plastic-free shopping for cosmetics, teas, face-care products, clothing and more.
House of Bravo is a fresh food shop that stocks milk, eggs, grains, raw honey and coffee. Most products are sold by weight and milk is available in reusable glass bottles.
The Refill Den stocks a variety of zero-waste goods, including reusable paper towel, tiffin tins, refillable bottles of Kalahari salt and natural soaps.
Good Source has a wide variety of zero-waste foods, including fresh produce, as well as personal-care products. It also has a deli selling cheeses and meats.
Rental of plastic moving boxes with Ecobox
In the spirit of zero-waste endeavours, Ecobox has been offering reusable moving boxes for many years.
These durable plastic boxes can be washed and reused hundreds of times before they need to be recycled.
Simply rent the boxes from us and once you’ve relocated and unpacked, we’ll collect the boxes from your new home or office.
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