We have had a successful 2 years providing plastic free shopping to the residents of Stafford and Surroundings. By providing loose wholefoods in bulk, customers can purchase as little or as much as they like - we encourage the re-use of any containers / bags and many customers now bring their own to be refilled with us. By doing this we have managed to reduce the amount of single use plastic packaging going to landfill, incineration or finding its way into the environment and our water course endangering wildlife etc. We would like to extend this provision by offering larger stock to enable customers to buy larder quantities of food stuffs, this brings down the cost to the individual customers. To do this we need to purchase a new food storage and dispenser system. We serve all customers but this time consuming - new dispensers enable customers to serve themselves - promoting independence and knowledge of how the system works. Each purchase saves non-recyclable plastics being used.
What we'll deliver:
Why it's a great idea:
A reduction in the amount of single use plastics entering the environment by enabling customers to bring their containers / bags to refill with loose wholefoods etc. Many plastics from food waste cannot be recycled and often get incinerated or find their way into the environment - by cutting out the need for this type of plastics litter will become less, resulting in less plastics polluting the water ways and endangering wildlife and ultimately having a positive impact on residents health and wellbeing. Customers reducing their food waste by only buying the amount of food they require - often packets in supermarkets contain too much food for the person buying them - this often gets thrown away as it can spoil once the packet is open. By only buying the amount of an ingredient the customer needs there is no waste. By providing food stuffs in new dispensers it enables customers to serve themselves, encouraging independence and free choice of the amount of items they want to purchase
Steps to get it done:
New storage and dispensers will enable staff members to reduce the cross contamination issue we find ourselves in with regard to COVID 19. Under normal circumstances customers bring in their containers and we place them on the scales and refill with appropriate food stuffs - this however increases the risk of contaminating our equipment- to allow customers to serve themselves we can ensure that once they have sanitised their hands on entry in to the shop- they can access the sealed dispensers and decant directly into their own container, with out staff needing to handle them. This reduces our risk of contaminating surfaces, equipment and ourselves whilst giving customers the independence to serve them selves - this frees up staff to take payment and keep shelves stock - thus enabling us to serve more customers - therefore reducing more plastics and encouraging reuse of items already in the home.
About the space
Staffordshire County Council