Refill shop officially opened after Covid delay

Refill Shop of Ikigai is opened

Mayor of St Ives Cllr Pasco Hussain, with owner Martin Cooper, opens the Refill Shop of Ikigai - Credit: Hunts Post

A refill shop in St Ives which sets out to protect the planet by reducing the amount of plastic and packaging waste customers use has been officially opened - a year after it went into business.

Mayor of St Ives Cllr Pasco Hussain  cut a paper chain to mark the opening of the Refill Shop of Ikigai, in White Hart Lane, which had been delayed by the Covid pandemic's third lockdown.

Opening of the Refill Shop of Ikigai

Martin Cooper at the Refill Shop of Ikigai in St Ives - Credit: Hunts Post

The ceremony was held on the first anniversary of the shop,  which enables customers to reuse containers, opening its doors to the public. 

Shop owner Martin Cooper said: “Last year we weren’t able to celebrate our opening – or even have many people in the shop – so this year we made the most of it.

“The shop has been a real success and people have really been supportive of our small local business."

He said: “We have a lot of regular customers who are committed to doing what they can to reduce their plastic consumption and live an eco-conscious lifestyle, as well as new customers who are enlightened by just what is available in a plastic free form.”

Opening of the Refill Shop of Ikigai

Goods ready for refilling containers at the Refill Shop of Ikigai - Credit: Hunts Post

The shop takes its name from a Japanese term which loosely translates as a reason for being, a purpose and leading a purposeful life.

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Cllr Hussain said: “It’s great to see a local independent business doing well in St Ives and the local community really supporting it – as well as doing their bit for the environment.

“I’m delighted to have been able to support this family business and share in their celebrations.”

The shop in St Ives encourages people to refill containers rather than buy new each time.

The shop in St Ives encourages people to refill containers rather than buy new each time. - Credit: HUNTS POST

The shop offers eco alternatives to many items used around the home, enabling customers to reduce the amount of plastic waste they build up with traditional shopping in supermarkets and to help reduce food waste.

Since opening the shop  and its customers have saved almost 15,000 single use plastic packaging and bottles from landfill by encouraging their reuse and refilling.

Mr Cooper said: "We are delighted at how the people of Cambridgeshire have embraced our shop and have chosen to make the switch to help us all help the planet.”