Ecolateral, Australia’s longest-running eco store, recently joined One Tribe to help protect endangered rainforests. The business has an extensive range of eco-friendly products that will now lower emissions and reduce their carbon footprint.
In addition to their choice to protect rainforests, Ecolateral also encourages customers to become more zero waste and engage with the refill movement.
Continue reading to learn about their journey and what their partnership with One Tribe means for the protection of the planet.
Ecolateral was born in 1994 when a small shop appeared almost out of nowhere in Murray Bridge, a regional South Australian town. The shop was ahead of its time, introducing a range of resources and tools designed to help eco-warriors down the path of reducing, reusing, and recycling.
This store was called ‘Waste Not Want Not Eco Shop’. After some time in Murray Bridge, the founders at the time moved the store to a brand new location in Goodwood. Here they were able to share their ecotools with a larger audience.
Over the past 27 years, the store has been passed down to a couple of owners and eventually moved again to its current location in Blackwood.
The business was purchased by its current owners in 2018, and they saw an opportunity to grow the business so it could reach even more people. It quickly became Adelaide’s most respected eco store. One of the Owners, Liddy, decided to retire in 2019 and the future of the store was determined during a chance meeting between her and one of the new owners, Jamie. She had been searching for someone who shared her values and care for the planet.
Liddy was thrilled when Jamie expressed an interest in taking on Ecolateral. Shortly after acquiring the new shop, Jamie decided to share the Ecolateral name with the Blackwood shop. It was then that ‘Waste Not Want Not Eco Shop’ became known as Ecolateral Blackwood. Currently, they have four locations in Blackwood, Magill, Adelaide City, and Brighton.
Ecolateral’s vision is to provide people with the resources and tools to adopt a more eco-conscious lifestyle. They feel this is the first step in helping inspire future generations of Australians to venture the path to becoming zero-wasters.
Their main goal? To see Australia become a zero-waste country and eliminate landfills.
They understand the heroes in this vision are the people who came before and hope to bring back many of their philosophies and mindsets. Ultimately, they want the community of people now to rise and spread the message of plastic-free, sustainable, zero-waste living. Ecolateral believes its role is to spread awareness of environmental issues and the potential solutions and provide the best eco-friendly products in its eco-store. They try to do this affordably and invite people to take their first steps with them.
“The eco-warrior journey is one that will not only change your impact on the environment, it will change your heart and positively impact your family for generations to come. Go out and make a difference.”
Since 1994, Ecolateral has been educating people in Australia on how to lead less wasteful lifestyles. The brand is incorporating many eco-conscious practices and continuously working to become even more eco-friendly. One of their most effective sustainability practices is the products they sell.
They sell zero waste products under numerous categories, including on the go, home and garden, beauty, food and health, and baby and kids. In addition, Ecolateral has several slow fashion items to encourage people to engage with the circular economy and buy less and treasure for longer.
Their product line is sourced from remarkable sustainable brands such as BioBag, Bamboo Textiles, 4MyEarth, Dr Organic, If You Care, KeepCup, Tru Earth, and more. All of these businesses are on the same mission to make the world a better place by empowering people to make positive changes within their lives.
Ecolateral is very strategic in selecting products to be sold in their stores. They strictly support the sustainable use of our Earth’s resources. For this reason, they look for specific criteria when determining whether a product/brand is suitable for their store.
What makes a product eco-friendly?
The environmental impact of Ecolateral is always on the forefront of the owner’s mind. Retail is recognised to be a resource-heavy industry. It requires many steps that can harm the planet.
As a result, the owners of Ecolateral are continuously auditing their processes and systems to see where they can improve, lower their carbon footprint and increase their environmental sustainability. So far, they have implemented many environmentally-conscious practices to help them reach their objectives.
These include ensuring regular communication with their manufacturers and suppliers to make sure the environmental impact of their supply chain is constantly reduced. However, there is much more going on than that, so let’s dive into some of the eco-friendly practices they are incorporating below.
All Ecolateral’s website orders are shipped in either recycled cardboard boxes with paper tape or entirely compostable post satchels. Additionally, their packing slips are printed on 100% recycled paper. In most cases, their online parcels are also shipped carbon neutral with Australia Post.
Another essential practice Ecolateral is engaging in is minimising and controlling their waste where possible. They have partnered with Terracycle and actively recycle multiple waste streams, with the byproduct of their business getting diverted to Redcycle and EastWaste via their recycling programmes. In addition to these schemes, they try to reduce their waste.
For example, any commercial printing they get done, they print on 100% post-consumer recycled card/paper using vegetable-based inks. However, they are working towards becoming entirely paperless. In addition, Ecolateral repurposes and recycles its bulk refill containers at the end of their lifespan. They also compost with a bokashi composting system in their staff room.
Ecolateral is also working to save energy where possible and make it green! They use 100% carbon neutral and renewable energy. They are recognised by the Australian Government GreenPower initiative for this.
When it comes to saving, any lighting they do have to leave on after-hours is on a timer switch and shuts off by 11 pm. When it comes to company cars, they are both plug-in hybrid electric cars. Their team are also earth-minded hippies who drive small, fuel-efficient vehicles. Their CEO even rides a motorbike to lower her environmental footprint.
Ecolateral began a challenging journey in 2019 to become a B Corp Certified business. They were granted certification, which means they are using their business as a force for good.
The certification measures the company’s real environmental and social impact. It verifies that the business meets the highest accountability, transparency, and performance standards.
Ecolateral has partnered with numerous organisations to serve as drop-off points around Adelaide. This is specifically for items that are not easily recycled in home bins. They have a helpful guide on their website to help people identify what is recyclable and what isn’t.
As mentioned above, Ecolateral does not just sell zero waste and eco-conscious products; they are also fuelling the refill movement. They are doing this through their refilling service. Customers can come to this eco store and refill their hand wash, body wash, shampoo, conditioner, cleanser, cleaning products, dental tabs, and much more!
Ecolateral has already implemented many sustainable practices to educate and empower people to lead more eco-friendly lifestyles. However, they are always looking to do more and improve their operations to be more environmentally sound.
One of their latest initiatives is partnering with us at One Tribe. We are now working with them to protect rainforests with every purchase their customers make. A true climate action hero, when customers purchase from their eco stores, they will automatically improve the carbon footprint of their investment.
A portion of the funds will go to rainforest protection projects. Some of these include stopping deforestation at the edge of the Bolivian Amazon and protecting the Leuser Ecosystem on the Island of Sumatra. Already, Ecolateral has protected over 20,000 trees and counting!
One Tribe are thoroughly impressed by everything Ecolateral has done to build a sustainable business. We are honoured to partner with them and are inspired by their mission and commitment to the planet.
Other zero waste, refill, and eco stores should take inspiration from ever the eco-conscious practice they have implemented in their business. They are the perfect example of how sustainability is more than just a business’s product offering and service.
If you have a business and would like to take your first steps to become more sustainable, check out our partnership programme. It allows you to do what you do best while taking action to save the planet.
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