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Food, Food News

Toronto's first package-free market will launch this summer

Liora Ipsum Jun 19, 2018 1:30 pm 1,629

Toronto’s newest specialty grocery store is going bare!

Bare Market is launching in Toronto this summer as a series of pop-ups while the company hunts down a permanent address aimed to open sometime in 2019.

The retail concept founded by Dayna Stein is on a mission to reduce waste by going package-free. It’s the first-of-its-kind in Toronto, though Stein credits inspiration to her peers including The Soap Dispensary and Nada in Vancouver, as well as, Nu Grocery in Ottawa, Épicerie Loco and Mega Vrac in Montreal, and The Tare Shop in Halifax.

Stein also notes that besides having a “direct impact on the amount of plastic pollution that shows up in the oceans and in our own backyards,” the added bonus of a package-free store is that “shopping like this often ended up being more affordable than at traditional grocery and drugstores.”

“Our hope is that with Bare Market we will encourage consumers to consider where their goods are coming from – the economic, social and environmental systems that make that possible – and make it easier for them to then do something about it!”

The first pop-up markets are set to begin later this month at participating locations including:

  • Bathurst-Finch Farmers’ Market (540 Finch Avenue West, Toronto) on June 27, from noon to 4 pm.
  • Malvern Farmers’ Market (Malvern Emmanuel United Church, 25 Sewells Road, Scarborough) on June 29 and July 13, from 3 to 8 pm
  • Patagonia (500 King Street West), every second Sunday from 11 am to 6 pm starting July 8.
  • Withrow Farmers’ Market (Withrow Park, 725 Logan Avenue, Toronto), every second Saturday from 9 am to 1 pm starting July 14.
  • Evergreen Brickworks Farmers’ Market (550 Bayview Avenue, Toronto) on Saturdays from 8 am to 1 pm, starting in late July – exact dates TBC.

Expect to find the market stocked with refillable, bulk, locally and/or sustainably sourced products including a range of body care (think shampoo, makeup, safety razors, bubble bath, and more), DIY ingredients (essential oils, butters, minerals, and extracts) and home care (laundry detergent, bamboo toothbrushes, eco-friendly toys, etc.).

Bare Market/Facebook

Food products will be added to the inventory in late-July “as we work with Toronto Public Health to ensure all bulk food product is being handled safely and in accordance with regulations,” says Stein.

Once introduced, look forward to bulk staples including nuts, seeds, beans, grains, pastas, rice, flours, cereals, oils, vinegars, sweeteners, spices, superfoods, candies, dried fruit, and veggies, coffee, tea, and condiments, as well as bulk cheese, dairy, proteins, and prepared foods like hummus, coconut yogurt and tofu.

Shoppers are encouraged to BYO-bottles, bags, beeswax wraps, and reusable “Tupperware” to fill while those that forget to bring a vessel can still participate with a container-lending program, offered with a 100% refundable deposit.

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