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How to shop grocery plasticfree

Plastic-free shopping - It's that easy!

The Zero Waste Movement is in full swing and plastic free shopping becomes easier with each passing day. Whether online or offline. Whether without plastic packaging or completely plastic-free. The possibilities for our shopping without plastic are manifold! It seems that our society is slowly getting fed up with artificial plastic and consuming more consciously. Half a century after the meteoric rise of plastic, it really is about time! The change in consumption is the reason why more and more unpacking stores and online stores for plastic-free shopping are sprouting from the ground.

Today I'm going to introduce you in detail to how you can shop plastic-free in the spirit of the Zero Waste movement. You will learn things for your plastic-free shopping, unpacked stores, online stores and an app for avoiding plastic. Microplastics in cosmetics & Co. know.

Before we get started, here is a short Table of contents for you:

  1. 10 ideasthat make plastic-free shopping easier
  2. Unpacked storeswhere you can shop packaging free
  3. Online storeswhere you can get your product online plastic free
  4. App Tipto quickly detect microplastics in consumer products

10 ideas that make plastic-free shopping easier

It doesn't have to be the unpacked store if you want to shop plastic-free. If you pay a little attention, you can also shop at Edeka, Lidl and other supermarkets without plastic. I'll show you how to increase your quality of life by going plastic-free. Below I show you 5 items for your plastic-free shopping and give you 5 tips on the way, how you make a wide berth around plastic products.

5 items to shop plastic free

There are some things you should always have with you if you want to shop plastic-free. See also the article Zero Waste Basic Equipment. These little helpers will support you to avoid packaging and plastic bags. Below I present you my 5 most important things for shopping without plastic:

Fruit and vegetable bags

Plastic free shopping fruit and vegetable bag

So that you can also buy apples, mushrooms, broccoli & Co. plastic-free without them flying back and forth and being crushed one by one, are Fruit and vegetable nets or bags are a wonderful support. Each of us should automatically take the reusable nets with us every time we go shopping, because they make plastic-free shopping possible even in the well-known large supermarkets. Plastic bag adé.

Jute bag

Plastic free shopping jute bag

should become standard before every purchase. Because with the Jute bag plastic-free shopping can be transported very well both in or at the market, as well as on the way home. Alternatively, of course, the good old backpack and shopping on site with the shopping basket. Eternally reusable jute bags you can actually get at any supermarket checkout or via the following link.

Drinking bottle

Plastic free shopping drinking bottle

For me, "plastic-free shopping" also includes regular Coffe2Go or water in plastic bottles. Because that makes plastic waste without end and that can be prevented by the brought cup or drinking bottle. Switch to tap water, which is healthier, cheaper, plastic-free and saves you the heavy lugging to the apartment. Also use your water bottle to bring with you and refill them with the Refill program at many cafes in Germany.

Lunch boxes

Plastic free shopping lunch box

With Stainless steel lunch boxes you can buy plastic-free at the sausage and cheese counter. You can't do this everywhere yet, but once you've found out where you can, you can always take the lunchbox with you. By the way, the stainless steel cans are also ideal for all unpacked stores! Here you can have the cans weighed beforehand and only pay for what you have actually bought.

Preserving jars

Plastic free shopping canning jar

Just like the lunchbox, screw-top jars are wonderful to fill up at the non-packing store. Just weigh them beforehand and you only pay for the weight of the food you buy. It doesn't matter if it's pasta, nuts or whatever. For storage in the kitchen are the Preserving jars with swing stopper or screw cap also perfect. And they look really good too!

5 tips for your plastic-free shopping

Plastic Free Shopping Think Ahead

You have now learned about plastic-free shopping. With these 5 tips, you can avoid plastic items right on the spot in the supermarket.

Thinking ahead

A little pre-planning is necessary to make sure you can shop completely plastic-free. So don't forget the above items before you head out of your apartment to the grocery store. Because without a backpack, jute bag, fruit and vegetable net, or canning jar, it's hard to shop for groceries completely plastic-free. I promise you, this will become second nature after the third shopping trip at the latest.

Glass instead of plastic

Plastic-free shopping Glass instead of plastic

Anything that is available in glass as an alternative to plastic makes you much more flexible when it comes to plastic-free shopping. For example, replace sauces from plastic tubes with sauces in glass jars or yogurt from plastic packaging with yogurt in glass jars. Think what you want, but I think you can taste the difference.

Paper instead of plastic

Plastic-free shopping Paper instead of plastic

Many things such as pasta, rice, etc. are usually sold in cardboard packaging without plastic bags or plastic windows. So you can buy your usual food in the supermarket and still stay plastic-free. A small drawback: Sometimes you can't get around a small plastic window in the package in a normal supermarket.

Cooking yourself instead of ready meals

Plastic-free shopping Paper instead of plastic

Cooking ahead, or "making meal prep" as it's been called lately, also helps you shop plastic-free. How? By making the food you buy plastic-free into your own meal, you can avoid unhealthy and plastic-wrapped convenience foods. Learn here in the Do It Yourself Blogwhat things you can still do yourself!

Avoid microplastic products

Plastic-free shopping - shopping without microplastics

One topic that I still miss out on because it's not directly visible and it's hidden behind a lot of technical terms on product packaging: microplastics! Microplastics in cosmetics is used for cheap stretching and goes directly through the drain into our waters. With the App CodeCheck you can check every product in a few seconds. I'll introduce you to them in more detail in a moment.

Unpacked stores are the measure of all things, because they make plastic-free shopping easier than ever before. Here, you can bring your own reusable packaging or buy it on site and simply have food filled. Almost every day, another unpackaged store is popping up in Germany, sprouting up within a very short time thanks to crowdfunding (financial support from interested people).

Original Unverpackt from Berlin as origin

I don't know if Milena deliberately chose the name "Original Unverpackt" when she started her own packaging-free supermarket, to note that she was the first in Germany to start a store of this kind. It certainly fits. Because with the great interest shown by many Berliners, Milena Grabowski has laid the foundation for many more unpackaged stores in Germany that ensure people can shop plastic-free.

Plastic-free shopping as a concept for the future

Plastic-free shopping without any packaging. Supermarkets such as Original Unverpackt manage without packaging and goods are usually offered openly. In addition to foodstuffs such as pasta, rice, nuts and the like, plastic-free supermarkets also offer detergent, soap, hairbrushes and dishwashing brushes without plastic. The food can be easily filled yourself from dispensers, depending on the desired amount. Herbs can be spooned from large jars and oil is available from a canister. The prices are good.

Here you can find a continuous list of unpacking stores in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.

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The basic concept of all unpackaged stores is the same. And it's great. Because the unpacked stores create new opportunities that shake up our society and save energy, as well as limited resources (petroleum). Regional farmers are often promoted, from the producer to the consumer, plastic-free shopping is a well-rounded affair. Since everyone gets their desired amount down to the gram, food waste is also limited. Unpackaged stores are pioneers of the Zero Waste movement and have made it clear that consumer culture is slowly changing. Less plastic waste, more conscious consumption.

Smart heads have already made the switch, and everyone else will follow. Before the introduction of plastic (more on this in the article What is plastic?) was logically consumed more naturally. Plastic brought many advantages that overwhelmed us. We see the disadvantages today. Very late, but we see them. And now, finally, something is moving. And plastic-free shopping in unpacked stores is representative of this movement.

In addition to the many great unpackaged stores, you can also shop plastic-free online. Because there are now also numerous online stores or providers that ship their plastic-free products without plastic material. So now you can also consume plastic-free on the Internet without making garbage. I would like to introduce 3 alternatives to you here, with which you can shop online plastic-free. One of them I am currently expanding myself to make plastic-free shopping easier.


Plastic-free shopping Paper instead of plastic

I extend the Plastic free store from CareElite for plastic-free products every day. Also with your help. Here you can buy plastic-free products, which are either produced by myself or by other suppliers. The items are divided into categories that make plastic-free shopping easier for you. With every purchase you support our worldwide Beach CleanUps and the education work on site.


Plastic Free Shopping Monomeer Shop

I am a real fan of Monomeer. Here you can shop plastic-free, also in all imaginable categories. The online store without plastic was created by Susan Rößner and was one of the plastic-free online stores in Germany. The products are shipped plastic-free and there is a lot of attention to sustainability Just take a look!


Plastic Free Shopping Laguna Shop

The online store of Laguna also gives you the opportunity to shop online plastic-free. The articles are shipped 100% without plastic material and are available from an order value of 59€ free shipping. I like the wide range of products in the Laguna store and that here, too, special attention is paid to sustainability, conscientious production and the longevity of the products.
The now large selection of online stores without plastic and the diversity of the articles, lay the foundation for being able to shop online plastic-free. In addition to the many online stores, there are also many suppliers who are slowly converting their products, which were previously still packaged in plastic, to plastic-free. The enormous growth of the Zero Waste movement will make some more smart entrepreneurs rethink in the coming months. That's the way it's wanted.


Plastic-free shopping means not only shopping without packaging, but also buying products without microplastics. Because as already mentioned in the article above, there is not only a problem with plastic packaging waste. Many articles also contain plastic. Namely microplastic, plastic that is smaller than 5mm. Small beads that are added to many care products for stretching. That's why we also have a big problem worldwide with Microplastics in cosmetics. The problem is that the beads are so small that they enter our waterways directly through our drains, as they cannot yet be filtered in sewage treatment plants. That's why it's up to the consumer to take care of it himself! I will now show you how this can be done most easily.


"How can I find out whether a product contains microplastics? Nobody understands all the technical terms on the back!" - This was exactly the question the founders of CodeCheck faced. Today, the app helps many people identify microplastics and other ingredients that are harmful to health and the environment (such as palm oil) in consumer goods. And this is how easy 100% plastic-free shopping is with the CodeCheck app:

  1. Download App (Google Playstore or Appstore)
  2. Scan barcode on the back of the product
  3. See which ingredients are of concern

Pretty straightforward, right? Scanning takes about 3 seconds and gives you confidence about the ingredients of consumer products. Just give it a try.
It doesn't matter whether you shop online or offline plastic-free. The important thing is that you solve the basic problem with the Plastic waste in the environment and consume more consciously. You are a role model for many, many people on our planet.

I hope that my tips will help you to shop plastic-free even easier in the future. I look forward to your questions, suggestions and experiences in the comments below this post. Have fun with the implementation!

Stay clean,

Christoph from CareElite - Plastic-free living

PS: You can shop plastic-free now. In the article Plastic free living - tips & tricks I'll show you where else you can save plastic waste!

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* Links with asterisks are so-called Affiliate links. If you click on it and buy something, you automatically and actively support my work with, because I get a small share of the sales revenue - and of course the product price does not change. Thank you for your support and best regards, Christoph!


Christoph Schulz

I'm Christoph, an environmental scientist and author - and here at CareElite I'm campaigning against plastic waste in the environment, climate change and all the other major environmental problems of our time. Together with other environmentally conscious bloggers, I want to give you tips & tricks for a naturally healthy, sustainable life as well as your personal development.

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