The Ripple Effect
Almost every post on our social media is about limiting waste and plastic free products.
But as we say goodbye to plastic free July and welcome to …. Eco Friendly August(??) (Just wait, it’ll catch on) I want to talk about a different side of sustainable shopping: The ripple effect of shopping at The Waste Not Shop.
When we opened this shop, part of our mission was to source as local as possible. Of course there a few items that are from far far away lands (hello, Miyabi charcoal water filters) but when asked about a new product, I start my search hyper local. Do I know anyone who makes this? Do I know anyone who WANTS to make this? Can we fill this need by putting a neighbors product on our shelves? We always start as close by as possible. Our dry goods come from a local distributor, our granola comes from a solar powered bakery at the end of the lake, package free lotion bars from an organic farm 10 minutes north, smudge sticks from Kat’s studio next-door, honey from Sam Hall in Canandaigua, waxed coffee bags from Doug and Amy at Spartan made and the list goes on….and on…and on!
To be honest, it would be easier to buy from a big distributor. Usually they have everything we could ever need curated in one spot. But to us, true sustainability is using what you have around you. From that blossoms a creativity and uniqueness that sets us apart from so many of our peers. It helps give us all space to grow! By choosing to “shop local” for our suppliers we eliminate fuel costs and support our local economy while carrying products that are similar but not the same as other low waste shops. We believe that by showcasing our local low waste/plastic free businesses we can support the makers we love and stand out in an exciting growing market!
Of course if I can’t find it hyper local we search our state, and then the northeast, and then the country, until we find a product that aligns with what our waste not warriors are looking for and best represents our mission. We look for plastic free, but we also look for woman owned, not on amazon, FAIR TRADE, transparency, cruelty free, and practical mindsets. This has connected us with brands we love and friends we value such as Carley at Zefiro, Little Seed Farm, and the wonder women at Fillaree to name a FEW!
This process is never ending and a constant source of joy for me. The process of finding something wonderful and then following the trail to see how its made and who is the proud artist or maker behind it never gets old and I truly learn from each encounter. Sometimes you find exactly what you need, and sometimes what seems wonderful at face value ends up being not so sustainable once you scratch the surface. Researching in advance and getting to know each company/business we feature is part of how we show we care for the planet and for each customer that comes to our door or website.
Ultimately, we want YOU to know that we put an incredible amount of time and effort into vetting each product because we want you to be able to walk into our shop, (or thewastenotshop.com) and know that with every product you purchase there is a positive impact beyond the plastic free part. The ripple effect of your purchase positively effects us AND the people who created it!
When you purchase a product with us you are supporting our family, and our dream, but you are also supporting heaps of other families and THEIR dreams. There is a saying, that every time you buy from a small business someone does a happy dance and I love to think about how each purchase going out our little shop door causes a whole dance party.