Waste-Free Shopping In The U.K

Words & featured image: Joshua Greenwood

Bristol’s first zero waste shop, Zero Green, aims to help with and bring a solution to how much single use plastic is used in packaging on everyday items.

“Our aim is to give people the opportunity to make a difference by providing a reduced packaging, plastic free shopping experience for a sustainable Bristol.”

The two founders, Lidia and Stacey both worked together prior Zero Green, and discovered that there were a vast number of people who want to start and transform their lives to work towards a zero-waste lifestyle. So, using their knowledge and experience, they established Zero Green and grew it to what it is today.

The concept of the store works like a giant pick-and-mix. Customers bring in their own containers, jars or cloth bags; weigh them; fill them with as little or as much of the loose produce as they like; weigh them again and then pay for it at the till. They sell everything from spices and dried fruit, to flours, cereals and nuts.

Along with this they also sell non-food items such as plastic free deodorants, water bottles, keep cups, bamboo cutlery and stainless steel straws.

Not only does Zero Green help to reduce plastic usage and waste, they also believe in supporting their community, working with several suppliers in Bristol and the surrounding area such as ‘Wild Sage & Co’, ‘The Raw Chocolate Co’, and ‘Mr Tea’s Teas | Bristol’.

Plastic waste is a growing issue in the world today, accounting for around 10% of the total waste we generate. This may not seem like a large percentage; however, it takes 500-1000 years for plastic to degrade, with 50% of the plastic we use, we use just once and throw away, an issue Zero Green is trying to tackle.

One of the biggest concerns plastic is causing, is within our oceans. Over one million sea birds and 100,000 marine mammals are killed annually from plastic in the ocean, with every species of sea turtle having been documented with plastic in or around their bodies.

It’s exciting to see stores like Zero Green popping up around the globe, trying to tackle such an important issue.


Discover more about Zero Green here.