Earth Care, People Care, Fair Share

fruit and vegetables

At the Co-op, one of our central focuses is care for our environment. We aim to become a zero-waste organisation and we have a number of habits and initiatives that take us towards this target. To find out about the many ways we’re working towards zero-waste, have a read through the tabs below.

We believe that shopping in bulk is one of the easiest ways for an individual to drastically reduce their usage of single-use packaging. Shopping in bulk also reduces food wastage because you only buy exactly as much as you need. We offer a wide variety of unpackaged groceries and household supplies to make shopping in bulk as easy as 1-2-3:

  1. Bring your containers from home or use the free reusable containers that we have at the Co-op.
  2. Weigh your containers and note how much each container weighs.
  3. Fill up your containers and you’re ready to check out at the counter.

Glass Bottle Deposit System

We have 1L glass bottles with lids for sale at the Co-op for $2 each. You may return these bottles and lids to the Co-op in clean, undamaged condition and receive the full $2 amount back. We sanitise and then reuse these bottles to minimise waste!

Donating jars & containers to the Co-op

The Co-op accepts donations of clean, re-usable glass and plastic containers, as well as clean plastic and paper bags. You can drop off your jars and containers to the “To-Be-Sanitised” shelving unit to the right of the kitchen door.


One thing we can’t avoid in the food business is cardboard. Almost all of our deliveries come in cardboard boxes and while we recycle all of these boxes, we’d prefer them to be re-used. If you would like cardboard boxes, we have a variety of sizes you can choose from – just email


The Co-op receives many of our orders on pallets, so we regularly have pallets to give away. For some great ideas on how to use pallets, check out this great Pinterest board! If you’d like to pick up some free pallets, email


The Co-op has food waste bins for our food scraps. Our friends at Patchwork Urban Farm take our food scraps to feed to their chooks each week. Unfortunately, we can’t accept household food scraps as we have limited capacity. You can contact Brook Clinton from the Capital Scraps Collective if you are looking for a curbside compost collection service.

We are a registered organisation with the ACT Container Deposit Scheme. If you have containers at home that you would like to donate to us, you can drop them off at your nearest return point and donate the container refunds to the Food Co-op. Alternatively, you can drop them to our Container Deposit Scheme bin next to the checkout at the Co-op.

To donate the refunds to us at the Return point, use our Reference Number: E011288

Eligible containers are:

  • soft drink cans
  • beer and soft drink bottles
  • milk and juice cartons

These include most glass, plastic, aluminium, steel and paper-based cartons that are between 150 millilitres and 3 litres.

Ineligible containers are:

  • milk, pure juice and cordial containers that are 1 litre or more
  • wine and spirit bottles
  • cordial bottles

These containers are not eligible under the ACT Container Deposit Scheme but can still be included in your household recycling.

Here at the Co-op, we take our food very seriously. We endeavour to offer the best produce that we can in terms of environmental impact; growing methods (organic, bio-dynamic, regenerative etc), transport (local, national, international), packaging and more. We support local growers and work to source the best-quality produce for our bodies and the Earth that aspire to maximise the positive impact and minimise the negative of their production and procurement.

Why do we do this? Because it just makes sense. We are in changing times and we must change with them – we must move away from the global food market and return to a local, regeneratively-grown food market. Joyfully, this comes with a whole lot of other benefits; reinvigorating eco-systems as well as our human systems. To see our list of local suppliers, have a look on our Products page here.

We are always interested in supporting more local suppliers of quality produce so if you know of another local farm doing great things, please let us know at

We’re proud to have a thriving Suspended Coffee & Lunch program at the Co-op.

What is it & how does it work?

A suspended lunch or coffee has been paid for in advance.

If you are financially comfortable, you can buy a suspended lunch or coffee and the Food Co-op will make a record of this to give to someone in need at a later time. We keep a tally of suspended coffees and lunches on a blackboard in our cafe. Usually, if you’re already buying lunch for yourself at the Co-op, you just ask the coordinator at the till if you can buy a suspended lunch or coffee along with your lunch.

If you’re strapped for cash at the moment, you can ask at the Cafe till to receive a suspended lunch or coffee. The Co-op will happily give you a suspended lunch or coffee that someone else has already paid for.

This system is a great way to pay-it-forward and make someone’s day a little easier – and a great way for the members of our community who are doing it tough at the moment to feel supported and get a hearty, nutritious meal or hot drink.

Soft plastics

We recycle our soft plastics through REDcycle. While we have limited capacity and can’t accept household soft plastics, we encourage you to drop off your clean, dry, soft plastic waste at your nearest REDcycle drop-off point.