The Wally Shop Brings The Farmer's Market To Your Front Door In Reusable Packaging

by Rudy Sanchez on 02/22/2019 | 2 Minute Read

Eating local has grown significantly in the last few years as many locavores want a greater connection to food producers within their own communities. A recent Gallup survey even found that nearly three-fourths of Americans try to seek out locally sourced food, and there are several advantages to doing so: it supports local businesses, often its package free at your local farmer’s market, and less-traveled food means lower emissions.

While it’s easier than ever to buy local, nothing beats the convenience of delivered food, and one New York-based company is combining locally sourced food, delivery and reusable packaging for a tasty and sustainable combination.

The Wally Shop sells and delivers locally sourced, fair trade, and organic products in reusable packaging. Customers place their order with no markups (although they do charge a service and delivery fee) and Wally Shop buys and delivers using a bicycle messenger same day. The kinds of packaging include mesh bags, glass jars and totes, all of which get returned on future deliveries. Wally Shop then cleans and preps them for reuse.

The Indian lunch delivery system called Dabbawala inspired the Wally's Shop's name. Started in the 1890s, food would be prepared by restaurants or wives that are then packed inside tiffins, a particular type of lunchbox. The tiffins are picked up in the morning and delivered around noon to husbands working in the city. Afterward, the empty lunchboxes get picked up in the afternoon, and the circle of lunch-life begins anew. The Wally Shop has a similar goal, a closed-loop same-day grocery delivery system using exclusively reusable packaging.

There’s growing interest in sustainable, reusable packaging grocery shopping. Last month at the Davos World Economic Forum, TerraCycle launched Loop, teaming up with CPG heavy hitters including Unilever, Procter & Gamble, Nestle, Coca-Cola and Mars. Loop delivers products in reusable containers that are then shipped back once consumers finish the product which TerraCycle cleans, refills and ships off again.

Just another reminder that the future is in refill.

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