“What is this project all about? Original Unverpackt will be the first supermarket in Germany without disposable packaging. We’re not just another option to the big supermarket chains, we are a real alternative. We think it’s time to redesign the shopping experience. On the first glance, you realize that shopping at this new store is something different than what you are used to. No endless shelves filled with products that promise you salvation. No piles of packaging after every shopping trip. No fights over who’s going to take out the garbage. No more throwing away food, because you bought too large of a pack. Package waste is not only irritating, but a real challenge for our environment. 16 million tons of packaging end up as waste every year in Germany alone. We think grocery shopping should become pleasant again, and our environment will benefit from this shopping revolution.
At Original Unverpackt you’ll find everything you need. You won’t find countless brands for each product because one, the right one, is enough. We carefully test and select each product. Most of our food is sourced regionally: no pasta of doubtful origin and even more questionable taste, but instead porcino penne noodles from a local manufacturer. For budget-minded shoppers, there’s not only organic, but also conventional products on offer. Everyone should be able to afford to help the environment in the way they can. There will also be a selection of non-food, cleaning and beauty products. Shopping won’t be the daily grind you’re used to, it will be a truly enjoyable experience. How does it work?
It’s incredibly easy. Our products are dispensed in bulk from so-called gravity bins. With one pull of the lever you can decide how much flows out into your container of choice. The easiest way is to bring your own containers, but if you don’t have your own containers with you, no problem! You can borrow some at the store or use the recycled paper bags on offer. We need a shopping revolution. We need to move away from wasteful single-use packaging, and instead make zero-waste and unpackaged food available for everyone. What is the project goal and who is the project for?
Our goal is to bring packaging-free shopping to Germany, so everybody can buy their groceries the way they want, while enjoying a carefully selected assortment. Our target group is you just us much as us. We want to decide how to shop. We want to know where our food comes from. And we want to determine how much packaging waste we are ready to tolerate. We want to have a choice, as consumers, as vendors, as producers. Why should you support this project? This project is the beginning of the end of packaging madness. We aren’t big insiders from the food industry. We want to change something, but that is only possible with your support.
This project sets an example and demonstrates that there are other ways to conceive of shopping. In only one generation we have managed to flood our planet with waste, let’s give the next generation the opportunity to make it better. With a goodie of your choice you can support our initiative, and we promise to do our best, to bring packaging-free shopping to your town too. How will we use the money if the project is successfully funded? With your support we can open our first store in Berlin. Original and Unpackaged. Opening a store costs a lot of money.
There are investments to be made for the renovation, furnishing the store and buying the first round of products to stock it. And there are operating costs like rent and salaries for our employees. We’ve been fortunate to find some private investors – all big supporters of packaging free shopping. Now we are only missing the last part of our funding to finally open the store.
This is where we need your help. Who are the people behind the project? Behind Original Unverpackt are Sara Wolf and Milena Glimbovski. With our team, Sarah Pollinger, Janina Steigerwald and Lola Mora, we have been working to create this supermarket for over a year now. In 2012 we started with a business plan that won several prizes at the Berlin Business-Plan Competition. And suddenly we realized it could be much more than just a plan. We quit our jobs or dropped out of university to make Original Unverpackt happen.
At the moment we are holders of the SAP Social Impact Lab Scholarship, a co-working space for social businesses, and hope to be able to make our move out in to the world soon with our very first packaging free supermarket. Our Team: Sara worked for Fairtrade and the UN and is an excellent cook and food lover.
Milena is a media designer and studied communication in Berlin and worked for Veganz – a young vegan supermarket chain, where she learned a lot about food retailing. Sarah, Lola and our intern Janina studied economics and have all worked in procurement and are currently creating the assortment of your dreams.”