ALICE McLean is convinced there is a kinder way to shop for the benefit of the planet.
Now, with heightened awareness and a growing campaign on the need to cut down on single use plastics, Alice is taking her beliefs to the next level.
But she is looking for feedback and input from Independent readers before taking the plunge to launch a new waste free shopping experience.
Formerly from Delph but now living in Marsden, Alice is keen to start an online store. It has been given a working title of Starkers Produce.
The aim is to provide customers with mostly dry goods free from single use packaging.
Items would be delivered to homes in Saddleworth, Mossley and the Colne Valley or a local collection point in durable reusable bags/containers.
Alice, a mum of two, takes up the story: “Many of us are making changes at home to reduce our use of plastics and single use waste and there are many tips online.
“The main changes I have made are buying milk from a milkman, refilling my shampoo, conditioner, liquid soap and washing-up liquid bottles, and buying vegetables and bread from local, independent shops.
“I also grow as many vegetables as I can throughout the year and my husband makes a lot of our bread, pizza and pastries.
“Everyone in our house has their own reusable water bottle and coffee/hot chocolate cups including the children.
“If you get an extra stamp on a loyalty card for using a reusable cup and you are buying several hot drinks at once it doesn’t take long to earn a free drink.
“It can be time consuming shopping in multiple shops in a quest to reduce single use packaging waste, especially if you are working.
“However, spending money with local independent businesses supports the local economy and is an enjoyable experience.
“What I am struggling to find, however, is somewhere locally to buy all of my dry grocery produce in one place without plastic packaging.
“It could be purchased online but there are often high minimum order values to qualify for free delivery, stock can be limited and is often sold out.
“So with Starkers Produce, customers would shop online and pay a single fully refundable deposit to borrow the bags/containers.
“Once the goods are finished customers would place the empty bags/containers in their delivery box and request a collection.
“You could select an option online allowing you to automatically receive a refill of the goods corresponding to the bags/containers you have returned.
“Shopping this way would be a great way to reduce single use packaging waste from your household.”
Alice has now appealed to Indy readers to discover if there is local demand for this type of online store with delivery service.
• Go to the link below to take five minutes to help Alice and the planet: www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/HTLQQGQ