Bulk foods to help fight war on waste

Pilbara News - - News - Shan­non Beat­tie

Ex­mouth may be a small com­mu­nity, but it is mighty when it comes to the war on waste and re­duc­ing the use of plas­tic that ends up in the Nin­ga­loo Reef.

Two lo­cal busi­nesses are help­ing to fight the good fight by es­tab­lish­ing bulk-food pur­chas­ing, which al­lows peo­ple to fill up re­us­able con­tain­ers or com­postable bags with var­i­ous foods and goods.

Nin­ga­loo IGA will be shut­ting down early next year to com­plete ren­o­va­tions for a bulk-food sec­tion, while new store Nin­ga­loo Bulk Foods is sched­uled to open in late Fe­bru­ary and will be solely ded­i­cated to sus­tain­able pur­chases.

Nin­ga­loo IGA di­rec­tor Jocelyn Lee said it was all about re­duc­ing waste while of­fer­ing or­ganic and lo­cal pro­duce to the com­mu­nity.

“This is some­thing we’ve been pas­sion­ate about for a long time,” she said. “We haven’t had plas­tic bags in our store for 11 years and our deli al­ready serves all our sal­ads in com­postable con­tain­ers.”

Nin­ga­loo Bulk Foods founder Jess Smith said her plan was to re­duce the amount of plas­tic that ended up in land­fill or the ocean and to give peo­ple the op­tion to live a zero-waste life­style.

“The store will com­prise a range of prod­ucts, like dried foods, you would nor­mally get in plas­tic at the shops, along with per­sonal hy­giene and clean­ing prod­ucts,” she said.

“As an ex­am­ple, we will have a large amount of sham­poo that peo­ple can use to fill up their own con­tain­ers, go home and use that, then come back in and re­fill that same bot­tle.”

As a marine bi­ol­o­gist, Jess has wit­nessed first­hand the im­pact of plas­tic and rub­bish on an­i­mals and the oceans, and felt it was some­thing for which she needed to take a per­sonal re­spon­si­bil­ity.

“Ev­ery per­son can make a dif­fer­ence, big or small, through sim­ple choices like say­ing no to take­away plas­tic cut­lery, buy­ing a keep cup or us­ing a stain­less steel wa­ter bot­tle,” she said.

Jocelyn said over the past few years, peo­ple had be­come more con­scious of their en­vi­ron­men­tal foot­print and IGA was do­ing its part.

“This is an op­por­tu­nity for us to of­fer peo­ple a way to get rid of plas­tic waste but also re­duce the build-up of pantry items that are rarely used.”

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