Project Overview

Seedy Zero Waste Store – A store where you can forget about plastic packaging. Seedy puts in resource- efficiency measures across all aspects of business. Apart from being part of an environmentally conscious business, Seedy also plays the role of educating consumers on the importance of a zero waste lifestyle.

About their pledge

Case Study

To Refill or To Not Refill?

Seedy Zero Waste Store is one of the few unique breed of package-free convenience stores available in Malaysia trading household and personal care products. Seedy is intrinsically a zero waste store for not only enabling the sustenance of one’s eco-conscious lifestyle, but also for literally generating close to zero waste.

Located in Kota Kemuning, Seedy differentiates itself with other corner stores or mini-markets in the area by offering products loose and without packaging. Its range of items include but are not limited to household cleaning agents, dry foods, daily hygiene essentials, kitchen utensils and skincare products.

3 months since the start of its operation, Seedy has not had to throw away a single wrapping paper or plastic packaging. Every single item is reused as much as possible. Grace, the owner of Seedy, noted that during the beginning period, all plastic packaging have either been given to her mother to reuse, or to a primary school to support their fundraising recycling campaign. Now, all non-recyclable plastics are collected to be used for Seedy’s Eco-Bricks workshop. Customers can also drop off single-use plastics, such as instant coffee and Milo packaging, and eco-bricks at Seedy. Seedy provides the unused plastics to a group of retired teachers in Kota Kemuning to weave baskets and collaborates with Eco Bricks Malaysia to collect eco-bricks from the community.

Apart from that, Seedy practices a sustainable purchasing model in its supply chain. Items are purchased in bulk, and where possible, the items are refilled directly from its suppliers.

The refillable model is able to eliminate a significant amount of packaging from Seedy’s supply chain. Imagine avoiding 125 plastic packaging of small mixed nuts packs (40 g each pack) only by purchasing 5 kg worth of mixed nuts in bulk.

To sustain this refillable system, Seedy have to compensate by making extra trips to some suppliers to drop off and collect their refillable jars. Whereas, the rest of the suppliers that Seedy engages with will deliver directly to the store when they are in the area. They will then swap jars or do in-situ refills. 

Seedy makes the most of the extra trips that they have to take by scheduling other appointments that they can fit into the day on their drive to the suppliers’ warehouses. The table below shows an estimated amount of carbon dioxide equivalent that Seedy would’ve emitted in one month of travelling to carry out this supply refill system. 

Supplier

Total trip taken by Seedy

Total distance travelled

Estimated frequency 

Estimated carbon emission from transportation in 1 month

Supplier #1

Drop off and pick up (round trip)

30 km

Twice a month

7.14 kgCO2e

Supplier #2

Drop off (1 trip)

5 km

Twice a month

1.19 kgCO2e

Total

8.33 kgCO2e

Reference: MYCarbon GHG Reporting Guidelines, 2014. 

 

Seedy’s ability in implementing the swapping system or doing direct transfers of items from the factory to the store eliminates the need to distribute items into smaller packages. Avoiding unnecessary packaging significantly reduces their waste generation.

Supplier

Product Type

Purchase Amount 

Estimated waste avoided

Estimated carbon emission avoided

Supplier #1

Nuts and dried fruits

20 – 30 kg (approximately 3 kg for each item)

Around 500 – 750 small plastic packaging which are non-recyclable (plastics lined with aluminum)

  • Manufacturing: 5.68 – 8.51 kgCO2e from production of plastic
  • End-of-life: Emissions from landfill, mechanical/feedstock recycling, or energy recovery

Supplier #2

Organic beans 

20 – 30 kg (approximately 3 kg for each item)

Around 80 – 120 medium-sized plastic packaging (zip lock plastic pouch)

  • Manufacturing: 1.59 – 2.38 kgCO2e from production of plastic
  • End-of-life: Emissions from landfill, mechanical/feedstock recycling, or energy recovery

Reference: MYCarbon GHG Reporting Guidelines, 2014. 

Note: Carbon emission for plastic production is estimated from natural gas as a source of plastic resin. End-of-life emission not determined. 

Refillable bulk purchases from Supplier #1

Indirectly, Seedy’s initiative curtails environmental impacts that are associated with waste. Seedy is able to reduce its carbon emission in waste generation that can come from the whole process of waste collection and transport, sorting and material recovery facility, anaerobic digestion, thermal treatment, etc. Lesser exposure of plastics and other wastes in the environment will also mitigate soil and water pollution, emergence of pests, and marine litter impacts as well as social impacts like waste trafficking.