Guest Post From The Clean Kilo!

Hi everyone!

Tom Pell - The Clean Kilo
Tom Pell – The Clean Kilo

In a change to your usual advertised programming, here is a guest post from Tom Pell of The Clean Kilo! This is an organisation we believe has similar aims to our own, and Tom would like to ask for your support.

There’s just one day left if you’d like to contribute to their Crowdfunder; it finishes on the 17th January! Click here:

The Clean Kilo will be a revolutionary way of shopping in Birmingham; providing customers with the option to cut down the amount of plastic that ends up in landfill and the environment. This is an issue that has become ubiquitous in recent times with the showing of BBC’s Blue Planet II and the plethora of news articles around the globe as the plastic pollution has been recognised as a ‘planetary emergency’ by the UN.


The 4 Simple Clean Kilo Steps - Weigh, Fill, Scan & Reweigh, Pay
These are the four simple steps customers take to buy products from the shop. They can bring any container, as long as it’s clean and can fit on the scales.

The zero waste supermarket, opening this spring, will sell a wide range of products without any of the unnecessary packaging. Customers will dispense products into containers they bring with them, use the containers sold in-store or use the free paper bags provided. Containers will be weighed before filling, then scanned & reweighed and then only the contents are paid for. Plastic is having a devastating detrimental effect on our oceans and marine wildlife as they take up to 1000 years to decompose, we must all act now before the irreversible damage goes too far.

We currently have a live crowdfunding campaign which will help pay for some of the more expensive equipment like the scales, till and dispensers. The campaign reached the target of £14,706 seven days before the deadline, so thank you to everyone reading this who pledged, however small or big that was. However, with a few days left we are still looking to push past the target in order help pay for the fees associated with this type of fundraising system, including platform costs, tax and the cost of the perks which can be claimed through different levels of donation. If you would like to be part of the solution to the devastating effects of ocean plastic, then head to to contribute to the campaign; there is still time for you to get involved! We are also offering sponsorship opportunities in return for higher investments (£300 or more) which will get a company’s or individual’s name known for helping to make plastic-free shopping happen in Birmingham.

Artist's Impression of shop interior
An artist’s impression of the shop in which you can see gravity dispensers for dry food products (middle left), stainless steel drums for liquids (back left), spice & herb jars (back right), fruit and vegetables (middle front) and at the back of the shop are self-service machinery for making freshly ground peanut butter, coffee and squeezed orange juice!

The supermarket, which will be located in Digbeth, Birmingham, will sell a variety of food, drinks, cleaning products and toiletries. Being able to buy the exact quantities desired also means that food budgets can be stretched further; allowing those who struggle to put food on the table every night to buy single portion amounts allowing them to afford all the ingredients for one meal. On average, a staggering 20% of your food bill goes towards packaging, that’s hundreds of pounds a year that could be saved, and tonnes of waste that could have been diverted from landfill.

We are big advocates for helping out with other like-minded enterprises, such as The Real Junk Food Project, who take surplus food and put it to good use. We will do everything possible to stop food waste in our shop. A lot of the products will have very long shelf lives, so that shouldn’t be an issue anyway. However, anything that does get close to its best before date will be given away to make sure we #feedbelliesnotbins!

The introduction of a 5p tax on plastic carrier bags at the supermarkets has had a tremendous effect on cutting plastic bag use so far; in fact 90% of shoppers now bring their own reusable bags to the supermarket. This shows that even tiny financial incentives can have a profound effect on consumer’s habits. The recent announcement that the government will introduce a tax on single-use plastics could then see many more people bringing their own containers, as well as carrier bags, to shops like The Clean Kilo for refills. We hope to introduce a click-and-collect and container deposit scheme to help those customers with less time; you would be able to order online, drop off containers to be filled and pick them up later on.

If you’d like to support the Clean Kilo, you can contribute to their Crowdfunder on Indiegogo or find out more about the project can be found on their website and social media pages on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.



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