Plastic Free Manchester Map
If you’re looking to reduce your plastic consumption and shop a little more sustainably, Manchester has an abundance of zero waste and plastic free stores to shop at. From refill grains and spices, to zero waste beauty products and more, Manchester has it all!
Building on the success and positive feedback I got from creating the first edition of my ‘Manchester Map’, I decided to do a little update. As Manchester has so many shops with plastic free options, I had to split the map into two to fit them all on - 1. ‘Central Manchester’ (e.g inside the M60 Ringroad) and ‘Greater Manchester’ (outside of the M60 Ringroad).
There’s a total of 25 shops to explore. Listed below are 12, plastic free shops in Central Manchester. For shops outside of the M60, check out my post here.
Where? 7 Market St, Manchester M1 1WT.
Best For: Refill frozen fruit and vegetables.
My Faves: Refill frozen peas and refill cereal (eaten separately obvs!)
Although M&S isn’t an independent store, which I always prefer to support, I feel I couldn’t leave it out. It’s the first chain supermarket in Manchester to install a refill section, and it’s a pretty good one at that! They’ve got your usual dried goods section filled with cereals, rice, pasta, snacks etc. However, my favourite part has to be the refill FROZEN section! They’ve got refill frozen fruit and vegetables, which means I no longer have to buy bags of plastic wrapped peas! Woo!
2. McCalls Organics
Where? Unit 6-7 Church Street, Manchester, M4 1PN.
Best For: Organic vegetables.
My Fave: Packaging free salad leaves.
A family run business, sat next door to it’s sister business McCalls Exotics, McCalls Organics stocks a huge variety of products. This deceptively large shop has so much in there, which on first glance you wouldn’t necessarily notice. From organic veg, to refill dried goods and plastic free beauty products, McCalls Organics is a one stop shop for everything you need in your weekly shop.
3. Earth Friendly Rocker
Where? 3rd Floor, Afflecks Palace, 52 Church St, Manchester M4 1PW.
Best For: Pampering products.
My Fave: The Bottled Baking Co Bottles.
With a gorgeous range of pampering goodies, from candles to bath melts and essential oils, Earth Friendly Rocker has everything you need for a relaxing, zero waste night in. They also stock everyday essentials such as reusable period pads and refill household cleaning products. A friendly, alternative zero waste shop tucked away in Manchester’s unique Affleck’s Palace. Definitely well worth a visit! Check out my interview with Earth Friendly Rocker’s owner here.
4. Ancoats General Store
Where? 57 Great Ancoats Street, Manchester M4 5AB.
Best For: Refill household basics.
My Fave: The refill chocolate covered honeycomb pieces.
Nestled in the heart of Ancoats, Ancoats General Store is a treasure trove full of food, drink, gifts, a coffee shop, post office... and more! Although not technically a zero waste store, the shop does have a pretty decent refill section of dried produce and household cleaning products. For me, this is my nearest store so I use it for some of my food refills, plastic free milk and refilling my laundry liquid. It’s a great little store with a happy atmosphere!
5. Eighth Day
Where? 111 Oxford Rd, Manchester M1 7DU.
Best For: A bit of everything.
My Fave: The sheer variety!
Eighth Day describes itself as a one-stop shop for all things vegan & vegetarian… and they’re not wrong! They have managed to cram a hell of a lot into this store. First opened in 1970 on the now demolished New Brown Street, Eighth Day has had many forms and been based in a variety of locations across Manchester. Now based on Oxford Road, Eighth Day offers the largest selection of veggie, vegan, organic and Fairtrade food in the North West! Similar to Ancoats General Store, this isn’t specifically a zero waste store, but has a plethora of plastic free products, loose veg and a basic refill section, so there’s plenty to choose from.
6. Deli Lama
Where? 220 Chapel Street, Salford, M3 5LE
Best For: Multi-tasking - grab brunch and refill items at the same time!
My Fave: Refillable gravy granules!
A family run business first opened in 2012, Deli Lama Wholefood Shop and Cafe is perfect for grabbing a spot of brunch while you fill up on your cupboard staples and refill products.
7. Village Green Community CoOperative
Where? 1 Longfield Centre, Prestwich, Manchester M25 1AY.
Best For: Fresh fruit & veg.
My Fave: The sense of community spirit.
Village Greens opened in Prestwich back in June 2014. Owned by the community from Prestwich and the surrounding area, their focus is to provide sustainable, high quality products at an affordable price. The shop aims to be a hub for the community’s health and happiness within Prestwich. They stock a wide variety of fruit and veg and a range of vegan, organic foods, as well as sustainable ranges of home and healthcare products. They also offer refill household and health products for you to fill up your own containers with.
8. Stretford Food Hall
Where? Chester Rd, Stretford, Manchester M32 9BD.
Best For: Refill household basics.
My Fave: The orange juice machine.
Owned by the same people as Ancoats General store, Stretford Food Hall is a haven of local food and drink, split into two halves: a shop and cafe/bar. On one end of the space you have pop-up food stands and a bar, with an extensive seating area, and the other end is a shop, crammed full of delicious food, including a refill station which is stocked with dried goods and household products.
9. Unicorn Grocery
Where? 89 Albany Rd, Chorlton, Manchester, M21 0BN.
Best For: Local produce.
My Fave: The community feel.
Although not technically a zero waste store, Unicorn Grocery offers a lot in the way of packaging free products - from loose vegetables to refillable oats and skincare products. Unicorn was established in 1996 by a small group of people committed to social change, who had a vision for the kind of place they wanted to shop in. They offer affordable, fresh food with an emphasis on organic, fair-trade and local produce. Unicorn is run as a workers’ co-operative, owned and democratically controlled by the staff who work in the shop. It’s a really lovely shop, packed full of amazing food and people - check it out if you’re in the Chorlton area!
10. Sustainable Shed
Where? Levenshulme, Manchester M19 2EF.
Best For: Refill household liquids.
My Fave: The unique setting!
The clue’s in the name - this shop is housed in a shed in Levenshulme! Packed full of eco-friendly cleaning and beauty products, plus refill options too, this small but mighty shop is perfect for stocking up on essentials if you live nearby. Check it out now.
11. Lentils & Lather
Where? 50 Burton Rd, Withington, Manchester M20 3EB.
Best For: Refill snacks and spices.
My Fave: The refill dark chocolate covered cranberries.
Owned by an eco-conscious couple, Lentils & Lather is a zero waster’s dream! Filled with refill food, spices, cleaning, beauty products and more, Lentils & Lather is a one stop shop for all your plastic free products. It’s a super-friendly shop and there’s plenty of space for you to browse and weigh out what you need. As well as refill products, Lentil & Lather also stock a variety of beauty, home and lifestyle products too - all plastic free of course!
12. The Good Life
Where? 472 Didsbury Road, Heaton Mersey, Stockport, SK4 3BS.
Best For: Nuts, seeds & grains.
My Fave: The branding, the shop is beautiful.
The Good Life is an independent waste-free mini market created by Shelley Brown. With a mission to provide a positive place in the centre of the Heatons community, the shop allows customers to easily shop in a sustainable, environmentally friendly way. Shelley price matches her products to be in line with Tesco, so it’s no more expensive to shop at The Good Life than a regular supermarket. This is an important factor to her, as she doesn’t want the shop to feel elitist in any way.
For more of Manchester's zero waste shops that are just a little further afield, check out my post here.