Weigh Greener a Zero Waste Shop for Lauder

by Charlotte Aitchison in Lauder, Scotland, United Kingdom

We did it
On 18th December 2019 we successfully raised £12,400 with 158 supporters in 28 days

Our mission is to open a Zero Waste Refill Shop for the community of Lauder and the surrounding areas.

by Charlotte Aitchison in Lauder, Scotland, United Kingdom

New stretch target

Money raised via the stretch target will be used to buy more dispenser such as oil and vinegar drums,  meaning we can provide a bigger choice of products for refill. We will also put money towards a nut butter machine so you can make fresh nut butters in store.

Weigh Greener a Refill Shop for Lauder

 Our mission is to open a Zero Waste Refill Shop for the community of Lauder and the surrounding areas. The shop will sell loose, packaging free food products as well as household items to assist with living a zero-waste lifestyle, such as eco friendly cleaning products and toiletries.

Why ?

Scottish consumers are purchasing more than 300,000 tonnes of single-use packaging for their groceries every year. Unfortunately this has a hidden cost not only to the environment, but also to our pockets. We are spending an estimated £600 million a year on packaging alone. It's a significant hidden cost for something that once discarded, we then pay around £40 million a year to our local authorities to deal with. All this single use packaging from supermarkets who give us little or no choice, because so much of what they sell is wrapped in unrecyclable single use plastic.

Sadly the Scottish Borders was one of the worst performing areas in Scotland for recycling last year with less than 40% of the waste we produced being recycled. Waste collected for recycling particularly plastics often travels thousands of miles to countries that now can't cope with the volume of waste they have from abroad. Over 50% of our 52,491 tonnes of household waste was sent to landfill.

Our Solution

Weigh Greener wants to be able to offer you a solution. By opening a refill shop in our town, we would be able to give our local community and the surrounding areas more choice to shop packaging free. 

Weigh Greener, will be Lauderdale’s first dedicated Zero Waste Shop. We plan to sell loose, packaging free products, offering a waste free refill service on a range of staples from pasta to shampoo.

As well as reducing waste from packaging Weigh Greener will help towards tackling the massive global food waste problem as customers will be able to buy only what they need. The shop will also stock a range of eco products such as bamboo toothbrushes, and soap bars. 

Weigh Greener will join Lauder High Street's small but dedicated groups of shops who are already helping to minimise the environmental impact of our shopping habits. Working hard to provide our community with local packaging free alternatives to the supermarkets.

What does a Zero Waste Refill Shop look like?

Eco Larder Edinburgh

How does a zero waste shop work?  

You simply  bring your own containers, or bags to fill up with whatever products you need and in the amounts you want. 

So you weigh your container, fill it up, re-weigh, label, and pay.

The Refillery  Edinburgh

Does our town want a Zero Waste Refill Shop?

The amazing response from our recent market research has been fantastic and overwhelmingly positive with over 300 surveys completed so far, and over 98% of respondents saying yes to a refill shop for Lauder.

We’ve had so many supportive comments indicating that people are ready to change the way they shop.

How are we going to do it

Weigh Greener will be a Community Interest Company meaning that our profits will be reinvested into our local community, supporting their environmental projects. We are launching a crowdfunding campaign to meet the initial set up costs for our zero waste refill shop.

What will the money be used for?

In addition to refurbishing a shop there is a long list of things we will need to set up our Zero Waste Shop including:

  • Gravity Bins
  • Scoop Dispensers
  • Glass jars
  • Scoops and spoons
  • Scales and till
  • Sink
  • Dishwasher
  • Shelving        
  • Lots of Stock

Who are we? 

Charlotte, Jenny, Amanda and Nina

Charlotte Aitchison. I live in Lauder and am regularly involved with its active community. From sharing my love of nature with the Primary Schools Garden Club to helping the environment with Waste Aware Lauderdale and Lauder in Bloom. I am passionate about the environment and raising awareness of the growing waste problem we all face, particularly the issues of single-use plastic. So many of us want to be able to reduce the impact our lives have on the planet we live on and reducing our waste is one thing we all have control over. Lauder is a fantastic place to live with a great range of local businesses, so I'm hoping Weigh Greener can be the next step in Lauder’s plastic free shopping revolution. Weigh Greener has grown from a small idea I liked to dream about, into a real business plan with a dedicated team of like minded enthusiastic local ladies.

 Amanda Cunningham. I have lived in the Scottish Borders most of my life, but I have been fortunate to experience and be inspired by some of the incredible eco communities in Scotland. I had family living in Killin in the late 1990s and I was really impressed by their community commitment to a low impact lifestyle, like a community compost heap and locally brewed beer. I was particularly inspired by Tombreck Farm, which is an organic community on the banks of Loch Tay that has itself grown organically. The most successful projects always have strong community involvement and Lauder has a great commitment to environmental issues and I am excited to be involved in taking the next steps towards local sustainability.    

Jenny Fausset. I have always had a keen interest in the environment - I studied biology and environmental science at college and am fascinated by the fact that we are all part of one big ecosystem! I met Charlotte through the school Gardening Club and it was then that Charlotte shared her business ideas for Weigh Greener!  TV programmes such as Seven Worlds, One Planet have made us very much aware of the negative impacts that our throw away lifestyle is having on the planet.  We can all do our bit to reduce the volume of waste we produce. I am looking forward to a local facility here in Lauder where I can buy even more products that are plastic and packaging free, where I can bring my own containers and buy as much or as little as I want.  I am also excited about the proposed workshop programme and having a community space to learn new skills. Support us with this exciting new business venture in Lauder!

Nina Kunkel. I have lived in Lauder for 13 years and have always been very active within the community, setting up and being part of local community groups. I work as a living kidney donor transplant coordinator and view my work in organ donation and transplant as the ultimate recycling. I am passionate about caring for the environment and reducing my family's impact on the environmental crisis our planet faces. I am raising my children to care about their planet, exploring plastic and waste free alternatives but as a busy working mum, I have found it difficult to shop completely plastic free. I am committed to working with the Weigh Greener team to bring a packaging free refill shop to our community, giving families such as mine a greater choice to shop more sustainably.    



How can you help or be involved?

1. Donate to our crowdfunding page big or small your support is Magnificent!

2. Purchase one of our great rewards.

3. Spread the word by sharing our crowdfunder, and liking and sharing our social media pages.

4. Get in touch we would really value your suggestions and ideas. 

5. Volunteering.  Do you have a passion to help others move towards a more sustainable lifestyle and have a few hours free each week?  Join our team.

However YOU can help in whatever way, small or large, it will be hugely appreciated.

Our Crowdfunding campaign is all or nothing meaning we only get the funding if we reach our target. We cannot realise our dreams of bringing a zero waste refill shop to the Scottish Borders without your support. Together, we can do it, giving us all an opportunity to live Weigh Greener!


This project offers rewards in return for your donation.

£50 or more

1 of 10 claimed

Felting and Fizz workshop

A place for you or a loved one on our Felting and Fizz workshop on Saturday 18th January 2020. 10% off your first visit with us and a Weigh Greener shopping bag Thank you x

£10 or more

10% off Sports Podiatrist appointment

10% discount for a new patient/new injury appointment with Jane Johnston Sports & Musculoskeletal Podiatrist at Professionals for Health in Lauder

£10 or more

10% off Physiotherapy apointment

10% off an initial Physiotherapy assessment with Lauder Physiotherapy at Professionals for Health in Lauder.

£10 or more

10% off Acupuncture treatment

10% off your first Acupuncture appointment with Sonas Acupuncture in Melrose.

£10 or more

10% off Hair Cut and Blow Dry

10% discount for a Cut and Blow dry with Claire Patterson Hair at Body and Mind in Lauder. Thank you

£20 or more

Branded shopping bag and 10% off your first shop

10% off your first visit with us once we open plus a Weigh Greener shopping bag to take your goods home with you, Thank you Your Wonderfull

£25 or more

5 of 10 claimed

Fantastic Firebrick Reward

Enjoy a free loaf of bread from our friends at Firebrick Bakery and a 10% discount voucher to use in the fabulous Firebrick Brasserie. Thank you.

£35 or more

2 of 10 claimed

50% off Clinical Hypnotherapy appointment

Half price initial Clinical Hypnotherapy consultation with Rowena Griffin at Professionals for Health in Lauder.

£100 or more

£100 Reward

Join our board of supporters inside the shop for all to see, this reward is great for local business or individuals who want to show their support more publicly. Thank you

£200 or more

Weigh Greener starter kit

To help you start your refill journey we will offer you 3 reusable produce bags, 3 reusable glass jars, a branded shopping bag, 10% off for your first year of shopping with us, and an invite to our preview opening night.

£500 or more

Supreme supporter

A massive thank you for your amazing support. You will receive 10% discount in our store for 3 years, a branded bag, a place on our supporters board and an invite to our preview opening event.

£10 or more

10 of 10 claimed

10% off Purple Plum in Lauder

10% discount voucher to use in Purple Plum in Lauder. Enjoy fantastic loose locally sourced fruit and vegetables and much more from our friends at the Purple Plum.

£50 or more

10 of 10 claimed

Make your own Cleaning Product workshop

A massive thank you. 10% off your first visit with us, a Weigh Greener shopping bag and a place on our Make your Own Cleaning Products workshop. You're Amazing!

£100 or more

1 of 1 claimed

Beautiful art work from At The Farmhouse

Fabulous unique reward from At The Farmhouse. Visit locally based artist Susan Bourne to arrange for a bespoke piece of nature inspired art created on reclaimed wood to your preferred design. www.atthefarmhouse.co.uk

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