If ever there was a city with a strong sense of place, it would be Edinburgh. From our offices on Calton Road we’re a stone’s throw from Holyrood Palace and a mere few steps from the Royal Mile, not to mention the Scottish Parliament and the iconic Arthur’s Seat which are also right on our doorstep. However, it’s the palpable sense of purpose across the local business community that’s making the Represent team feel most excited about living and working in Auld Reekie.
Edinburgh has always been an important commercial, financial and cultural hub, but it is now growing its green credentials through an emerging group of green businesses of all sizes.
Inspired by our work with leading waste management firm, Changeworks Recycling, account director Grainne Byrne shares some of her favourite Edinburgh businesses working hard to help us reduce our environmental impact and carbon footprint.
Plastic free shopping
Most businesses are created to solve problems and for these small businesses, life began out of a desire to eradicate plastic. Refilling is not a new concept, originating in the 1960s, but it is a key way to change behaviour when it comes to reducing our plastic consumption. It’s also a much more cost-effective way to shop, buying in bulk and keeping overall costs down.
Weigh to Go, Leith
Weigh To Go on Leith Walk aims to offer an easier way to live sustainably. It is helping shoppers to reduce plastic consumption by selling loose produce such as nuts, seeds, pulses, grains and toiletries that can all be taken away in the customer’s own or shop-bought mason jars and containers.
The Eco Larder, Haymarket
Edinburgh-based sustainability-focussed business The Eco Larder acts as a zero-waste grocers and offers a series of workshops to help educate the community about reducing our plastic waste footprint. This family-run initiative is dedicated to fighting plastic pollution and building a movement here in Edinburgh.
The Refillery, Newington
The Refillery on Newington Rd is another plastic-free grocery and ethical goods store which sells ethical products alongside smart plastic alternatives including beeswax wraps. They’re all about showing people how easy it is to ditch the unnecessary plastic for good!
Bravo to these small scale enterprises for showing us easy ways to purchase our groceries sustainably.
‘Re-do’ and mend
Edinburgh is home to some amazing social enterprises that act as an antidote to our throwaway society by helping us to restore household items.
Edinburgh Remakery, Leith
The Edinburgh Remakery is a community repair hub and second-hand home goods store that’s trying to help us reduce waste, recycle more and reuse rather than add to our endemic waste problem.
Based in Leith, it takes any unwanted goods and refurbishes and repairs them, giving them a new lease of life so that items can be sold on at affordable prices or gifted to people who need them the most. This fantastic initiative also hosts workshops to help teach people repair and restoration techniques to give them the skills to make textiles, woodwork and furniture items last longer whilst helping to reduce our impact on the environment.
Upcycled World, Meadowbank
Also working hard to save the planet are Upcycled World, a not-for-profit community interest group that’s encouraging and empowering people to creatively upcycle products. They teach sewing, furniture painting, stencilling and decoupage to help extend the lifespan of products and helping the local community to reduce, reuse and recycle.
These local businesses are all about bringing people together through rewarding, fun and impactful activities. Whether you want to remove plastic from your life or upgrade a beloved furniture item, there are a whole host of inspiring initiatives and events right here in the capital to help you reduce your impact on our fragile wee world.