Low-waste concept store arrives in Penticton - InfoNews

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Low-waste concept store arrives in Penticton

Local Motive Low Waste Market sells locally sourced produce, cleaning products, bulk items and more at its new store in Penticton's Apple Plaza.
May 23, 2020 - 6:00 PM

It may not be the greatest time to open a new store — during the first week of a cautious reopening of the economy after the COVID-19 lockdown — but that didn’t stop Local Motive Low Waste Market of Penticton.

Store owner Thomas Tumbach says business has been brisk at the low-waste concept store, which opened Friday, May 22, in Penticton’s Apple Plaza.

Tumbach says the store has been in the planning stages for a year, originally conceived as a way to sell produce from his farm in Summerland.

“We have been operating Localmotive organic delivery, selling boxes of vegetables from our and other local farmers. This store is our first foray into retail space,” Tumbach says.

The store offers bulk products, cleaners, natural soaps, shampoos and conditioners, sourced locally wherever possible.

COVID-19 restrictions have limited self-serve bulk items, but Tumbach says staff are filling jars for customers who can return them for a deposit and pick up another.

“People seem to like the bulk sales. It’s presented an opportunity to serve people and get to know them, like an old-time apothecary,” Tumbach says.

The store also sells locally-grown produce, including micro-greens, which are baby plants such as broccoli, similar to sprouts but grown in soil rather than water.

Micro-greens were selling well at today's opening of the Local Motive Low Waste Market in Penticton, May 22, 2020.
Micro-greens were selling well at today's opening of the Local Motive Low Waste Market in Penticton, May 22, 2020.

“They are more nutritious, and they’re more fun. You can add them to salads, sandwiches or wraps,” he says.

Micro-greens can also be produced year round, providing some fresh greens at a time when there normally isn’t anything locally available.

Tumbach says the cleaning products carried are bio-degradable, natural products that are sold in highly concentrated form to reduce packaging waste and shipping weight.

“We’re trying to think how we package and sell products. The apple chips and hibiscus tea is sold in wood chip cellophane, which is compostable in your backyard,” he says.

The store also supplies locally produced and milled oats from Summerland, flour, pastas and alternative grains, all from B.C. organic farmers.

“We’re not shipping product from all over the place, we’re supporting the local economy, and the whole idea is, let’s source as much as we can from as close to our place as we can. Hopefully that builds their businesses, and we’re a more resilient community because of how we set it up.”

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