Last year at Canadian Grocer, we wrote about an interesting new store concept in the works in Austin, Texas.
In.gredients was to be a zero-waste, packaging-free grocery store. Shoppers had to bring all their own glass or plastic containers and bags to load up.
A year later, In.gredients is indeed open for business. The tiny store (it’s only 1,300 square feet) carries some 350 items in bulk that shoppers can pour into their own containers.
The brainchild of two brothers who run a software consulting business, In.gredients relies on a certain amount of technology. Each container a customer brings in is given a QR code that signifies its empty weight.
Once filled, the container is weighed again to determine how much food is inside and the amount of money owed.
Behind the scenes, In.gredients says it works with a local firm to make sure Styrofoam, film and other packaging materials are recycled.
In.gredients isn’t entirely without packaging. By law, meat and and dairy products must be sold prepackaged.