Minimizing your carbon footprint and going zero–waste can be daunting. To celebrate Earth Month, we rounded up our five favourite eco–conscious stores from across the country that are making sustainability accessible – and stylish.
The Soap Dispensary and Kitchen Staples Open since 2011, the city’s first dedicated refill store is a favourite among eco–conscious Vancouverites looking to stock up on all–natural soaps, household cleaners, simple glass dispensers and DIY ingredients like beeswax and essential oils (it stocks over 800 bulk items). In recent years, the shop has moved beyond soaps, offering workshops, kitchen tools and local food products ranging from freshly milled flour to grains and legumes. thesoapdispensary.com
Canary Goods Inspired by the zero–waste movement that’s been taking over Canadian cities like Vancouver, Calgarians Tara Meyer and Lisa Watts opened a modern shop entirely dedicated to eco–friendly products. Beyond the usual shampoo–and–soap refill section, Canary Goods proposes a carefully curated selection of lifestyle accessories, including brooms, stainless steel straws, toothbrushes and bamboo baby plates. canarygoods.ca
Unboxed Market This 1,500–square–foot space on Dundas West has been home to a grocery store for over 50 years. To honour that heritage and reduce their carbon footprint, the owners of Unboxed have upcycled elements from the previous store and other local shops, including old–school cash registers, fridges and a hot table that’s loaded with daily dishes like salmon, roasted chicken, pasta and vegetables. The eco–grocer also houses a café, a bakery, a butcher, a cheese counter and a market kitchen where you can sit down and enjoy a snack or a complete ready–to–eat meal. unboxedmarket.com
Vrac & Bocaux Nestled in Montreal’s Rosemont neighbourhood, Vrac & Bocaux (French for bulk and jars) sure does its name justice: Large jars and containers of teas, spices, grains and nuts fill the store’s minimalist steel–and–wood shelving units. In keeping with its eco–conscious ethos, the store sources local produce, toothpaste tabs and made–in–Quebec sandwich envelopes sewn in muted–tone fabrics, ideal for environmentally minded shoppers who want to look good while doing good. vracetbocaux.ca
The Tare Shop With regular workshops and events, this community–focused coffee shop and bulk store is a lively hub for Haligonians looking to learn about making better choices for our planet. Halifax’s first zero–waste coffee shop has no bags, no straws, no plastic packaging and no single–use coffee cups, which means you’ll have to bring your own travel mug or borrow one from their “mug library,” a collection of donated mugs you can take to go and bring back on your next visit. thetareshop.com