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First zero waste grocery store in Hyderabad is now open

Zero Waste Eco-Store opened earlier this month and has been drawing a steady trickle of customers from the neighbourhood and other parts of town

Nestled in the bylanes of Karkhana, Secunderabad, is a small and unassuming store that you might miss while driving by, unless you notice the name painted in bold letters — the ‘Zero Waste Eco-Store’. The store opened earlier this month and has been drawing a steady trickle of customers from the neighbourhood and other parts of town, thanks to word-of-mouth publicity.

Step in and you can shop for a lot of your home needs, but remember to take your own bags, bottles and containers. If you aren’t carrying these, the store stocks a few cloth bags, bottles and paper covers for a price. The store has a stringent no-plastic rule and is happy to pack all your essentials — rice, pulses, oils, cleaners et al — in paper covers, cloth bags and containers.

Goa, Chennai and Bengaluru among a few other cities, have similar no-plastic grocery stores where customers are encouraged to get their own non-plastic packaging materials and this is the first such initiative in Hyderabad.

Pankaj Sancheti, his wife Jyoti and sister Pratibha Jain are the force behind the store, along with two other partners Suvibha Nolkha and Namrata Baldwa. A chartered accountant by profession, Pankaj lived in Chennai until recently and used to shop at Ecoindian, The Zerowaste organic store. When he moved to Hyderabad three months ago, he was disappointed at not finding something similar and decided to open one.

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