In an article published on March 14, 2016 by the New York Times, journalist Aimee Lee Ball reports on the concept of ‘prerecycling’ where trash is eliminated before it is created. Grocery stores embracing this concept have emerged in European cities such as Berlin and Vienna, as well as in various locations in France, Belgium, Spain, and Italy. Shoppers can dispense or fill bulk packaged grains, pasta, vegetables, fruits, or oils, into mesh tote bags, burlap sacks, tins, jars, or similar adequate containers that they bring along themselves. The idea is that “if you don’t use new plastic, paper or metal to begin with, you won’t have to dispose of it,” Ball writes. Also, customers can “reacquaint themselves with weights and measures to buy exactly what they need.” The shops usually offer only one or two selected alternatives of a product, counter to the often overwhelming amount of choice at regular grocery stores, Ball adds. In this manner, the shops aim to offer customers “a personal relationship with a shop” and create “a place where you pamper yourself but make conscious choices,” said Kathrina Dankl, co-designer of the Viennese shop Lunzers.
Aimee Lee Ball (March 14, 2016). “The Anti-Packaging Movement.” The New York Times