This guide covers the Kāpiti Coast only. For other parts of the Greater Wellington Region, please refer to the Zero Waste in the Greater Wellington Region homepage.
Lots of pantry staples – from flours, grains and rice, through to condiments, spices, legumes, nuts, seeds and liquid foods – usually come in single-use packets. These shops stock all manner of pantry foods loose in bulk bins (or operate return & refill systems for their packaging), allowing you to put these goods straight into your own bags, jars, containers and bottles, and skip the packaging!
The following shops sell unpackaged meat, sausages, smallgoods, seafood, cheese and/or deli foods and will happily put these straight into a BYO container – woohoo!
The following stores bake and sell unpackaged bread and bakery goods (in some of these stores some items might be pre-packed or wrapped in cling film, just avoid those things!). Simply BYO bread bag to put the bread/bakery goods into. Some places will bag up their bread later in the day, so you want to get in there before they do that (i.e. before 1pm).
Look out for places that sell whole or ground coffee beans unpackaged, and bring your own bag and container to fill. Going direct to coffee roasters is the best option, but you can also look out for bulk dispensers of coffee in other stores. Here are the spots we found:
We avoid teabags as most have plastic in them, which we don’t want in our tea or our soil. Using loose leaf tea is an easy way to get around this. The trick is to find somewhere that sells loose leaf tea packaging-free, so you can put the leaves straight into BYO jars/containers! You’ll find loose tea leaves in bulk dispensers at:
Sourcing cow’s milk without the plastic bottles or non-dairy milk without the dreaded Tetra-pak is no mean feat! We’ve found the following options:
Look out for places that sell beer on tap and BYO bottles/flagons to fill up. Breweries are awesome, but lots of liquor stores offer this option too! We found beer on tap at:
Also, don’t forget that most liquor stores do ‘swappa crates’ of beer – i.e. crates of twelve 745ml bottles of classic NZ beer (e.g. Lion Red/Brown, Speights, Tui, Export Gold etc.) which can be returned (when the bottles are empty) and are then sent back to the brewery for sterilisation and refill (a better outcome for glass bottles than recycling because reusing the same bottle over and over requires way less energy and resources than recycling).
Drinking Chocolate – Bin Inn Kāpiti, 128 Kapiti Road, Paraparaumu stocks cocoa powder in the bulk bins.
Say “no more” to disposable takeaway coffee cups and plastic water bottles by getting yourself reusables instead! Get reusable water bottles at Commonsense Organics, Coastlands Mall, Paraparaumu, Simply New Zealand, Coastlands Mall, Paraparaumu, State One Designs, MacLean Street Paraparaumu Beach and 196 Main Road, Ōtaki (metal & glass) and Cream Design, 215 Main Road, Ōtaki.
And for a reusable takeaway coffee cup, find the Keep Cup brand at Commonsense Organics, Coastlands Mall, Paraparaumu, Steven’s, Coastlands Mall, Paraparaumu and Coast Kitchen & Catering, 43 Seaview Road, Paraparaumu Beach; the Sol brand is sold at State One Designs, MacLean Street, Paraparaumu Beach and 196 Main Road, Ōtaki; the NZ made Cuppa Coffee Cup brand can be found at Artel, Outdoor Mall, Waikanae; River Stone Cafe, Main Road, Ōtaki stocks Ideal Cups; Joco cups can be found at Olde Beach Bakery, 3 Ono Street, Waikanae Beach. Cream Design, 215 Main Road, Ōtaki stocks a range of different coffee cups.
Reusable lunch boxes or containers are great to have on you when you’re out and about in case you want to get takeaways, to carry leftovers home with you, or if you find food to forage. You can get Meals in Steel stainless steel lunchboxes and food containers at Commonsense Organics, 37 Waterloo Rd, Lower Hutt.
Plastic shopping bags are a menace, but so too are those plastic produce bags for fruit and vege or the plastic bags often offered alongside bulk bins at bulk stores. You can avoid them by bringing your own bags or buying a set of reusable produce bags. You can get 100% organic cotton Rethink produce and bulk bin bags at Commonsense Organics, Coastlands, Paraparaumu and Artel Gallery + Store, 9 Mahara Place, Waikanae.
Say “no straw thanks” next time you order a drink out and either use your mouth to drink, or get yourself a reusable metal straw instead. If you’re keen on a reusable metal straw, you can get them from Commonsense Organics, Coastlands, Paraparaumu; Bin Inn Kāpiti, 128 Kāpiti Road, Paraparaumu, Coast Kitchen & Catering, 43 Seaview Road, Paraparaumu Beach and State One Designs, 196 Main Road, Ōtaki.
The following stores stock a range of liquid and/or powdered cleaning products in bulk dispensers that you can fill your own bottles/containers with:
You can find dishbrushes with wooden handles and removable + replaceable, home compostable heads at Commonsense Organics, Coastlands, Paraparaumu; Bin Inn Kāpiti, 128 Kāpiti Road, Paraparaumu; and Steven’s, Coastlands Mall, Paraparaumu.
We also encourage people to move away from using dishclothes, sponges and bench wipes made out of synthetic material (as these leach microfibres and they’re also destined for landfill when they wear down) and to use natural fibre cloths instead:
It’s easy to get soap without packaging in Kāpiti. The following stores sell totally naked bars of soap:
We’d encourage you to get your everyday toiletries – from shampoo through to shaving soap – in bar form, which means you totally avoid the plastic/aluminium bottles that liquid products usually come in!
There are zero waste, low cost alternatives to disposable sanitary items like tampons and pads. For example, you can find menstrual cups at Commonsense Organics, Coastlands, Paraparaumu.