AN ECO-FRIENDLY store in Taunton is encouraging consumers to embrace a sustainable approach to shopping promoting ‘zero-waste’ principles.

Lesser Litter, on Paul Street, is offering a “positive option for shopping ethically, organically and packaging-free”.

The shop first opened in July 2018 with the idea of reducing the amount of plastic used in the packaging process to go ‘zero-waste’.

Lesser Litter believes in reusing packaging, circular supply, and supporting sustainable organic farming practices.

Shoppers can bring and fill their containers or buy them in the shop itself and use them more than once.

But owners Kate and Pete Robertson are now explaining how the original idea has now evolved to include ethical considerations too.

Mrs Robertson said: “The original idea was born out of frustration as a customer in not being able to buy my basic items in an environmentally friendly way.

“We were quite lucky in Taunton as there were options, like the Farmers Market, but there were items that I couldn’t buy, like pasta, rice, and cereals.

“Every time I wanted any I was forced to buy them in a plastic bag.”

Mrs Robertson said running this kind of shop is “a completely different working experience”.

Somerset County Gazette:
Lesser Litter shop on Paul Street in Taunton

She also said working thinking only about the packaging is not enough and Lesser Litter gradually became involved in providing food that can also be ethical.

Mrs Robertson added: “We have become savvy and we ask questions to our suppliers before we start dealing with them.”

The shop tries to get local produce from the UK and when buying from other countries they want to be sure workers are treated fairly and that suppliers are ethically aligned to the shop.

The couple said they ask their suppliers “difficult questions so things are simple for our customers”.

The owners also said their cruelty-free approach led to the selection of vegan products.

Lesser Litter’s ideas and approach get even more important now that big supermarkets like Morrisons are trying the same approach in some of their stores.

Morrisons is currently trying a ‘zero-waste’ conduct in its Edinburgh shops and it might extend the project to all of its stores across the UK.

The aim is to go waste-free by 2025.

Mr Robertson said: “We don’t know what will happen in the future. Being a small business, we can adapt and do the best we can.”

His wife added: “It’s a gradual change and people are becoming more aware of their impact on the environment.

“This kind of shopping should always be cheap and about quality products. It should be simple and straightforward and not scary.”

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If you run a ‘zero-waste’ shop in Taunton or Somerset and would like to explain how it can help the environment, please email