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The UK’s First Plastic-Free Store
Plastic is still a major issue all over the world. An estimated 381 million tonnes of waste plastic is produced each year and most of it ends up polluting oceans and natural habitats.
Plastic is harmful to animals and has been responsible for the death of countless beautiful creatures. Reports of animals found dead after ingesting large amounts of plastic appear in the news on a regular basis. It goes without saying that we need to do something about the harm that humans are causing to the planet.
There are some organisations that realise the importance of removing plastic from the environment. Charities have been set up to start removing the plastic that already litters the planet, and companies that package their products with plastic are beginning to look for eco-friendly alternatives.
In more recent news, a shop in Edinburgh is helping to fight the war on plastic by becoming the UK’s first plastic-free shop.
The Leith Collective
The Leith Collective has committed to a tough New Year’s resolution to ban plastic in 2021. The Edinburgh shop will start 2021 by becoming the first shop in the UK to ban all plastic.
The local business showcases the work of over 120 artists and makers from all over Scotland, brought together by a common aim; to reduce, reuse, recycle, reclaim and resell items that would otherwise be destined for landfill. However, shop owner Sara Thompson hasn’t found preparations for becoming plastic-free particularly easy.
She found that plastic is in more everyday items than she expected, things that she would never have imagined contained plastic, and had her work cut out for her when researching and sourcing alternatives.
Everything in the shop will be plastic free which has led Sara to reimagine the store’s visual displays and source upcycled and biodegradable packaging including searching for non-plastic sticky tape and barcode stickers.
Sara was inspired during the first lockdown after seeing nature flourishing in the absence of human intervention. This was followed by the contrasting reality of seeing how quickly the local area became littered with single-use plastic once areas started to return to what has become the new normal. It was at this point she felt the overwhelming need to take action.
Sara hopes that The Leith Collective will inspire other business owners to follow her lead and is inviting them to visit the store to see how she has achieved becoming plastic free.
Making a Difference
We’re happy to see another company recognising the issue of plastic waste and doing what they can to reduce, reuse and recycle plastic. This is another small step towards a solution to the plastic problem and we hope it inspires others to get on board.
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