From the beginning, one of our top priorities at Glover Street Market has been strengthening our bulk product offerings in order to reduce packaging waste and provide customers with the convenience of utilizing the storage systems in their own homes. The bulk grains/nuts/snacks/beans section of the store does a brisk business, as do the bulk spices. With simple paper bag packaging—or better yet, containers that they’ve brought from home—customers are not burdened by unnecessary chipboard or plastic containers, and they’re able to buy foods and spices in the quantities they need, not the quantities those items are arbitrarily packaged in.
Several years ago, we added bulk soaps and cosmetics to our volume purchasing options, as well as flavor-infused olive oils and an array of white and dark balsamic vinegars. Customers refill jars and bottles, reusing favorite pouring devices that work well in their own kitchens and bathrooms (and which, frankly, are far more attractive than conventionally available vessels). Mason jars, antique decanters, heirloom flasks—we’ve seen customers use them all over and over, saving the waste created by a single-use glass or plastic bottle each time.
At Glover Street Market, we are proud that our bulk offerings help reduce waste in the Methow Valley, and have set us on a path toward zero waste in the valley. As more consumers subscribe to the convenience, cost savings, and aesthetic appeal of purchasing in bulk—no matter how tiny the quantity—the better we feel about supporting our community in making conscious decisions about waste consumption and reduction.