A zero waste market
A zero waste market
Building a sustainable environment for shoppers and vendors.
In 2018, with the help of an enthusiastic, knowledgeable, and dedicated volunteer, we began a reusable serviceware program.
With this zero waste program, we aim to:
- Reduce waste: by keeping recyclable materials and discarded food scraps out of landfills
- Avert waste: by offering reusable items such as plates and cutlery
- ‘Close the loop’: by promoting the use of post-consumer recycled products
- Educate: by encouraging shoppers and market sellers to reduce, reuse, and recycle both at the market and beyond
One way we work to meet our goals is to offer reusable plates, bowls, cutlery, cups and mugs for food and beverages consumed at the market. We have a collection of these items that we wash and sanitize for reuse. Week after week. The zero waste station has had a big impact already. After 15 markets, our serviceware was used over 1700 times, preventing that many single-use items from going into the landfill. That’s 880 pieces of cutlery, 508 plates, 246 bowls, and 75 cups!
We have asked vendors to overall use less packaging and to provide compostable or biodegradable packaging when they can. Over the next few years our rules will tighten around packaging to ensure further reduction in waste.
REPAIR, REHOME and more…
Withrow Market is proudly committed to being environmentally friendly in these other meaningful ways:
- Reusable coffee mugs are available at our coffee table (mugs were used over 1000 times in 2018)
- Host clothing and jewelry repair-athons (get your jeans mended by professionals for free!)
- Work with the Toronto Tool Library to bring clothing and toy swaps to the community
- Feature zero waste vendors at our special artisan markets
- “Need a bag. Take a bag. Leave a bag.” program to reduce the use of plastic bags
- Regular cookbook swap are run by market volunteers
- Hold clothing drives, benefiting newcomers to Canada
- Offer to take dead batteries and dead markers for proper recycling
We welcome your thoughts on this program.
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