South Africa: The Zero Heroes


Meet the new crop of zero-waste shop owners in South Africa and find out what motivates them to embrace living an eco-conscious life.

There's something very soothing about shopping at a zero-waste store. Apart from the obvious lack of plastic, what's also missing are the bright colours on the packaging that shriek "buy me" and "I'm better than all the rest". Instead, large glass jars quietly say: "You want oats/lentils/almonds? Here they are". No shrieking required.

In 2017 Bea Johnson, the founder of Zero Waste Home and the author of the book by the same name, toured South Africa, spreading the zero-waste word to an eager eco-conscious audience.

Since Johnson's tour the idea of BYOB (Bring Your Own Bag) zero-waste shopping has grown in popularity in South Africa.

I retraced Johnson's route, starting in Cape Town, and caught up with the owners of the crop of zero-waste shops that have sprung up in SA since her tour.

NUDE FOODS: Nidia Daniels, Avumile Nicholas Ncapayi, Paul Rubin and Xoliswa Qunta; image courtesy of NUDE FOODS

Paul Rubin opened NUDE FOODS in the East City in December 2017 and in August 2018 NUDE FOODS opened its second store, housed in an upcycled...

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