However, in February of 2010, they moved to a new location and expanded their offerings to include sustainably sourced fresh, frozen, chilled, and packaged organic food products. Many of these products are locally sourced, certified organic, and Fair Trade Certified.
They have taken a number of steps to ensure they’re doing their part for the environment, including:
Investing in Green Energy Sources
They installed their own solar panels that contribute about 10% of their overall power use throughout the store. They also did an energy audit and reduced energy consumption by ensuring proper maintenance of coolers and freezers, swapping out old fluorescent light bulbs with LEDs, and reducing water usage.
Of their 21 staff members, about 85% of them commute to the store by foot, bicycle, or bus.
All of their produce is certified organic (except for the produce they grow – see below). Certified Organic produce has a lower GHG and carbon footprint than non-organic agricultural produce. The organic process focuses on feeding the soil and helps sequester carbon from the atmosphere
During the summer, the staff at Earth’s General Store also grow a 50’ by 150’ garden that is located just 170 steps from their store. Talk about locally-sourced!
They have been refilling people’s containers and bags since 1991. Over a typical year, they help people avoid over 78,000 counters (laundry, maple syrup, etc) and 65,000 plastic bags.
An extensive recycling program helps the team at Earth’s General Store generate 75% LESS waste than a typical store of similar size.
Food that is past or nearing its best before date is heavily discounted, given away for free, donated to an animal sanctuary, or composted in order to minimize waste.
Meat has a heavy climate footprint so Earth’s General Store does not supply any meat products. In fact, most of their staff follow a vegan or plant-based diet.
Earth’s General Store also provides a wealth of knowledge to Edmontonians, encouraging them to consume less, consume wisely, and consume locally.
They are also proud promoters of a zero-waste lifestyle by offering bulk options for most of their products, helping you to reduce your plastic footprint!
Their website has hundreds of helpful resources on important global topics like animal rights, human trafficking, climate change, and much more.
To learn more about Earth’s General Store, or to educate yourself on important global issues, you can visit their website here.