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Nottingham Zero Waste Collective Provide Cupboard Essentials Without Plastic Packaging

20 February 19 words: Emily Thursfield

The rise of the zero-waste lifestyle has seen local folk crying out for a place where they can buy all their cupboard essentials, like pasta, lentils, oats and tea, without that pesky plastic ending up in their waste bins. Enter Sarah Maloy, and the Nottingham Zero Waste Collective…  

“I’ve always been into sustainable living and using my knowledge to make choices about what I buy, but after reading Bea Johnson’s book Zero Waste Home, it really got me thinking about the waste we were creating as a family,” says Sarah. “I looked inside my bin and most of it was single-use plastic film, bags and other items that couldn’t be recycled.”

After her search for a local bulk-buy shop came up empty, Sarah and her friend Kimberley Tew, owner of the online shop Plastic-free Pantry, created the Nottingham Zero Waste Collective Facebook group, and started a plastic-free pop-up store, where customers can bring empty jars and containers to stock up on a plethora of produce.

The pop-ups have been running since March 2018, and they’ve recently completed a month-long residency at Rough Trade. “The feedback we’ve had has been undeniably positive, and a lot of people have thanked us for doing this. I’ve learnt a lot from these people too; we have a lot of loyal customers who I really enjoy seeing, as we share zero-waste tips with each other. Together, I do feel we can make a difference,” says Sarah.

Community is a recurring theme in Nottingham’s sustainability scene, with many organisations working together towards their shared goal. Nottingham Zero Waste Collective is now working alongside the local branch of Greenpeace on their plastic pollution campaign, and Sarah is continuing to work hard on her other main project, Nottingham Fixers. Watch this space, as we’ve been told that this plastic-free pop-up store may soon become a permanent fixture around these parts.

Nottingham Zero Waste Collective on Facebook

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