Explore Verde Market: A Zero-Waste Haven for Local, Sustainable Shopping

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Discover the World of Zero-Waste Markets

A Cleaner, Greener Way to Shop: Bulk Purchases Minus the Packaging

A zero-waste market features typical everyday items in bulk without packaging. You bring your own (BYO) bulk bags, jars, and containers, refill on food or household supplies, and pay. The shopping experience is package/plastic-free, meaning your purchase will not create any more unnecessary waste while still getting what you need. The concept is clever and inspiring in a world filled with bulging landfills (Seneca Meadows, New York’s tallest landfill, is as tall as the Statue of Liberty).

And many everyday products we purchase wind up in containers anyway because their original packaging is bulky or not aesthetically pleasing (talking to you laundry detergent jug).

What Can You Find in a Zero-Waste Market?

Zero-waste stores provide almost everything you need for basics, including:

  • Cleaning supplies
  • Personal care and hygiene
  • Beauty products
  • Nuts and dried fruits
  • Milks and Farm-fresh eggs
  • Superfoods
  • Baking items
  • Pantry staples (beans, seeds, grains)
  • Beverages, Coffees, and Teas
  • and specialty items like Coconut Aminos and falafel mix.

We discovered one of these local shops right here in South Florida.

Verde Market: A Sustainable Shopping Haven in South Florida

Verde Market is an eco-friendly zero waste grocery store that sells local, organic, vegan, plastic-free, and palm oil free items. They have 3 locations: Midtown Miami, South Miami, and Fort Lauderdale. Interior view of a zero waste store, Verde Market. Open shelves featuring a wide variety of bulk home items to shop.

Verde Market – real people making better choices for a healthier planet

The store’s passion is to provide “plant-based, organic, and waste-free products.” They strongly advocate for “conscious consumerism and encourage our customers to bring their own containers and refill them at our bulk stations.” 

Interior view of the soap refill section in Verde Market

zero waste store, interior of verde market

They offer more than 300 items for refill! See their full bulk menu here

The store is clean, well-stocked with high-quality items, and budget-conscious. While some items are higher ($15+ for 8 oz. Butter), you’ll save so much in other ways (since you’re not paying for packaging) that it balances out in the end. 

Beyond Verde Market: Exploring Zero-Waste Alternatives

More than 400 zero-waste supermarkets are now worldwide, with more on the horizon. Open markets and BYO .containers and bins are not an entirely new concept. In other countries, most street markets are set up this way. But in America, the trend is to rely heavily on big box stores while buying fresh/organic has been too expensive and therefore out of reach to mostly marginalized communities (a whole other blog for another day, but food deserts are real).

Farmer’s Markets: A Sustainable Alternative for Conscious Consumers

Local Farmer’s Market are also a great alternative if zero-waste supermarket pricing is out of range.

Farmer’s Markets are just as eco-friendly, and though packaging is offered, you can BYO your own containers. There, you’ll likely find similar offerings, including local honey and jams, beverages, oils and vinegar, spices, organic candles, cruelty-free beauty products, and an exceptional assortment of fruits, vegetables, and baked goods.

What do you think? Will you be visiting your nearest zero-waste store? If you’re not sure where to start, check out Litterless, a zero-waste directory that can help you find one in your state.

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