Zero Waste Shopping: An Introduction Guide To Purchasing From Bulk Store
You might have already heard of bulk stores before but have yet to step foot into one. If you have not, a bulk store is a zero waste concept store that sells goods in bulk. This sight has been growing in Singapore as many are going towards plastic-free and low-waste living. Choosing a bulk store helps in eliminating most of the plastic packaging we get buying from conventional supermarkets. Along with the freedom to buy in any desired amount, consumers only have to get what they need.
If this new concept of grocery shopping sounds intimidating to you, we have broken it down into an easy guide below. We have also included some tips in each step for you, just so you will be extra equipped for your first zero waste bulk shopping experience!
Step 1: Plan a shopping list before heading down
It will be easier if you plan a shopping list before leaving the house. Have a look around the pantry to see what you need to top up on, and add them to your list as you go. It is also good to have an idea on how much you need to get.
Step 2: Bring your own bags and containers
As most of the items at the store are without packaging, you will be encouraged to bring your own bags and containers. Planning a shopping list also helps to ensure you do not end up packing extra or insufficient containers.
Not sure what kind of containers you can use? Any container you have sitting in your kitchen cabinets can be utilised. You can also make use of food jars from pasta sauces and jams to name a few. Just make sure they are cleaned and dried well before reusing.
Step 3: Get the containers weighed
Once you are at the store, first thing is to get the containers weighed before adding any content into them.
This is the tare weight, which will not be considered during payment. The tare weight will be subtracted from the overall weight of the container with the item added inside. This weight after subtraction will determine the amount you have to pay.
Step 4: Scoop and fill
After weighing your empty containers, fill them up with your choice of products.
A great thing about shopping at bulk stores is the flexibility that comes with it. You are encouraged to buy only what you need. Therefore, you do not have to worry about filling the containers completely. In the end, you are only charged based on the amount you get. Example, raw almonds which are sold at $2.80/100g will be $0.28 if you choose to only get 10g of it.