Top 8 Zero Waste Stores In NYC!

New York City has some of the best grocery shopping in the world, hands down. I am not talking about regular grocery stores; I am talking about zero waste grocery shops! NYC has so so so many to choose from.

It’s a paradise for us zero waste living folks. Today, let’s go through some of my favorites and explore zero waste stores in NYC style!

Best zero waste stores in NYC

What's a zero-waste store? And why consider shopping at one? There are so many great reasons! Head to the end of this post to read more about that!

And if you want to take a sustainable bite out of the Big Apple, try these NYC thrift shops! You might find your new favorite outfit and positively impact the environment too!

If you are wondering, “well, where is the best zero waste store near me in New York?”... Keep reading!

1. Green Star Natural Foods Market

Image: Green Star

If you are ever in the Ithaca area, I would highly recommend visiting the Green Star Natural Foods Market. I think Green Star is honestly the best zero waste grocery store NYC has to offer.

Bring your plastic-free containers and stock up on their enormous selection of flours, sugars, granola, cereal, dried fruit, herbs, spices, teas, peanut butter, honey, vinegar, oils, and more! This is also a great way to reuse your old Tupperware containers.

Green Star also has a healthy food discount program (called FLOWER) designed to make natural food and other eco-friendly products available to everyone, no matter your income. The FLOWER discount is for up to 13% and that can make a big difference when money is tight. I love that!

What they offer:

  • Produce 
  • Dairy, eggs, and cheese 
  • Meat and seafood
  • Beverages, liquor, beer, and cider 
  • Bakery and deli items 
  • Frozen food, dried goods, and pasta 
  • Condiments and sauces 
  • Personal care
  • Baby
  • Pets
  • Party and gift supplies

2. The Wally Shop

Zero waste lifestyle concept. Eco-friendly products, flat lay.Pin
Image: The Eco Hub

The Wally Shop is a zero waste grocery store based in Brooklyn where you can find zero waste pantry essentials, household cleaning supplies, and personal care items all delivered in reusable packaging!

Here’s how it works, you order your items online and they will be delivered in completely reusable, returnable packaging. You will be charged a deposit for the packaging, but you get it back once you return it to a UPS delivery courier on a future delivery or schedule a free pick-up on their website.

But the coolest thing about The Wally Shop is its origin story. The founder, Tamara, worked at Amazon managing the packaging and shipping category.

She felt anxious and hopeless seeing all the plastic that went into their packaging, and amid a climate crisis! She realized if she took the value and convenience of Amazon's delivery service, but made it more sustainable, she could be a part of the solution. How inspiring!

What they offer:

  • Baking Ingredients 
  • Beverages
  • Candy and chocolate
  • Condiments and sauces
  • Grains and pasta
  • Household cleaning
  • Personal care
  • Pet Supplies 
  • Snacks 

3. Precycle

The inside of the zero waste shop Precycle.  Pin
Image: Precycle

Ever wondered where to buy food in bulk in NYC? Precycle is NYC’s first package-free bulk grocery store! Also in Brooklyn, they work with local farmers and distributors so customers can understand where their food is coming from.

They ask customers to bring their reusable containers for bulk food, although they also have reusable containers at the store for purchase if you forget.

Once you have filled your reusable container, bring it to the checkout to be weighed and priced (the container weight is taken off your total). If you can't reach their in-person store, you can also shop online! Shop for fruits, veggies, pantry items, home items, personal care… they have it all.

Precycle is also a certified B corporation, so you know they abide by strict environmental performance and accountability standards. In other words, they are the real deal.

What they offer:

  • Produce and fridge items 
  • Pantry items 
  • Snacks
  • Sauces and condiments 
  • Coffee and tea
  • Home and personal care
  • Supplements 

4. The Package Free Shop

A zero waste kit. Pin
Image: The Package Free Shop

The Package Free Shop is a great place to shop bulk for body care items like hand soaps, body washes, and deodorant! You can shop their great selection online (they have free shipping on orders worth $65 or more) and in a permanent brick-and-mortar store in NYC!

They look at the ingredients that go into the products and packaging they sell and how it is transported and disposed of. This is so important!

While many of their products are package free, some still come in packaging. This is because the FDA requires some products (like menstrual cups and toothbrushes) to be in packaging - but it’s still recyclable!

They also have a cool rewards program where you can earn points with them as you shop and redeem them later on for exclusive discounts. For example, following them on Instagram is worth five points, while giving a product review is worth ten points… what a neat idea!

What they offer:

  • Household items 
  • Beauty and Body, like toothpaste
  • Family and kids
  • Pet 
  • Clothing and accessories 

5. Common Good & Co

The inside of the zero waste shop Common Goods. Pin
Image: Common Good & Co.

Common Good & Co is another Manhattan zero waste store that should be on your radar. They specialize in nontoxic and refillable cleaning products for your home, laundry, and body (you know, I love zero waste cleaning supplies). My favorite thing they have is their Dish Soap Refill Box!

It holds 2.5 gallons of dish soap. That is a lot! When the box is empty, you can ship the liner back to them to be used repeatedly. Plus, it’s made with 86% less plastic and 65% PCR cardboard and is fully biodegradable.

But Common Good & Co doesn’t just sell dish soap. They also have hand soap, laundry detergent, and spray cleaners. Like their dish soap refill box, all their products have refills, so you don't have to keep purchasing plastic cleaning bottles!

What they offer:

  • Hands 
  • Dishes
  • Laundry items
  • Surface items
  • Refills

6. Fourth Street Co-op

The exterior of 4th Street co-op. Pin
Image: Fourth Street Co-op

You should visit Fourth Street Co-op if you are ever in Manhattan and need dry goods like nuts, seeds, seasonal fruits, spices, and snacks. They also have oils, vinegar, and soaps.

Fourth Street Co-op is a member-run cooperative grocer in the East Village and functions similarly to other co-ops in the sense they are communally owned and/or run. Their employees don't work for pay but for a store discount. They focus on selling locally grown, vegetarian, fair trade, high-quality, and organic items at a reasonable price!

What they offer:

  • Bulk dry goods
  • Produce
  • Recipes 
  • Coffee and tea

7. EcoBronx

A collection of eco wooden dish brushes. Pin
Image: EcoBronx

Need zero waste cleaning and personal care items in the Bronx? EcoBronx has you covered! According to their website, they started because they saw many eco-friendly stores in Brooklyn and Manhattan, but none in their area.

They wanted to improve their community’s ability to access sustainable products and increase their community’s general knowledge about sustainability as a whole.

To do this, they sell sustainable, refillable, and/or package-free products like beauty oils, zero waste dish soap, laundry pods, utensils, deodorant, etc.… all from primarily local vendors.

They also offer educational workshops for their community members like, “why the need to reduce plastic usage” and “making your cleanser.” They now have mobile shops and vehicles (pop-up store style), aiming to open a permanent location to offer food items.

What they offer:

  • Bundles 
  • Children 
  • Pets
  • Home
  • Bathroom and personal 
  • Kitchen 
  • Cleaning
  • On the go 
  • Refills 
  • Fun and crafts 

8. Earth and Me

Image: Earth and Me

Earth and Me are based in Queens but offers free delivery to Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens on orders over $40 (plus they deliver in a very cool EV). And you can get TONS of different stuff from their store. They have personal care items, from zero waste deodorant to conditioner, shampoo, or dish soap. They also have tons of cute zero waste gift ideas!

Their founder, Kayli, started the company because she believed “sustainability, quality, and affordability shouldn't be mutually exclusive.”

After a career transition, she saw an opportunity to buy from small-batch makers in bulk quantities, reducing prices and packaging.

Today, Earth and Me have its brick-and-mortar store offering a full selection of zero-waste home and self-care products.

Kayli and her team have donated over $1,000 to Black-run environmental and social justice groups and over $300 to organizations for clean water in Palestine, supporting Asian youth in NYC, and reforestation efforts (totaling over $4,000 to community projects). I love a company that lives out its mission!

What they offer:

  • Sponges and scrubbers
  • Eco-friendly starter packs 
  • Home care
  • Personal care
  • Clothing and accessories 
  • Pet care

9. Maison Jar

The outside of Maison Jar Refillery.. Pin
Image: Maison Jar

Maison Jar is a super cool new NYC zero waste store in Brooklyn! They have only been open since March of this year, but they already have a great selection of personal care items, dry goods, oils, vinegar, spices, dairy, frozen fruits, fresh bread, supplemental powders, and more!

Their items are packaged free, and many are fair trade, organic, and vegan. For my Canadian readers, it reminds me a bit of Bulk Barn!

Like Precycle, you must bring your container, which will be weighed to determine the price of your item. But in my opinion, the best thing about Maison Jar is how many partnerships they have created with local vendors (their list of local partners goes on forever).

What they offer:

  • Baking 
  • Bread and grains 
  • Produce
  • Refrigerated products
  • Household and personal care 
  • Frozen and essential packaged foods
  • Snacks 
  • Pasta and noodles 

What is a zero waste shop?

Zero waste stores, which can be online or in person, offer consumers reusable, refillable, recyclable, or returnable products. They are plastic free and help people reduce their overall waste while learning about sustainability and the five R’s of zero waste simultaneously.

Why consider shopping at a zero-waste shop?

Zero waste grocery shops can help you transition to a plastic-free fridge and zero waste pantry. This is something that makes my heart sing and is just so needed.

Food and its packaging account for 45% of all waste sent to landfills in the USA since food packaging is mostly single-use (primarily plastic and cardboard).

NYC has committed to becoming carbon neutral by 2050, and part of this transition includes embracing zero waste! Some of the city’s recent commitments include introducing food scrap drop-off sites and composting programs.

Their curbside organics program now serves over 3.5 million people, with over 100 drop-off sites with more on the way. NYC is getting it together regarding food waste, but it still has a ways to go with food packaging!

A final word on zero waste stores NYC

No matter where you live in the “big apple”, there is a zero waste store for you! I hope today you have a better idea of all the zero waste stores NYC has to offer, and why it’s so important to shop from them.

If this article was helpful for you and you think it can help someone else, please share it! And if I missed your favorite zero waste store in the NYC area, please share it in the comment section below!

Image: Common Goods

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