Today (April 22, 2021), is Earth Day and this year’s theme is coming together to Restore our Earth.
We know that the planet is in a precarious place right now—well it has been for a while.
We are facing a climate crisis, with rising global temperatures that are having a negative effect on, well almost everything. Our population is growing at an alarming pace that will put greater strains on consumption of all resources. Plants and animal species are going extinct each and every day. Individual and corporate carbon foot prints, our trash, our food waste, our anything waste, is out of control.
There is increasing pressure on governments to implement change to protect our planet, but sometimes all of that can feel so big and out of our control.
Sometimes it’s better to bring the issue of sustainability down to a more individual level.
Each and everyone of us can take tangible steps to create a more sustainable Earth. We can all incorporate more eco-friendly and sustainable practices into our every day lives.
I’m going to be quite transparent and say that I don’t do this enough. I know I don’t. There’s a LOT of room in the sustainable space for me to grow and it’s my intention to be more conscious about the environmental impacts of the products or services that I choose to use. I want to and will become better.
And one of the ways I’ll do that, perhaps the way I know best, is by intentionally shopping at local businesses who offer sustainable, eco-friendly products or services!
Guide to Shop Sustainably-Focused Edmonton Area Businesses
Total Businesses: 23
Last updated April 22, 2021 (Earth Day).
Thanks to my very eco-friendly, sustainability-conscious friend Diane (@Argenplath) for suggesting many of the businesses in the original list of sustainably-focused Edmonton area businesses.
If you’d like to suggest a sustainably-focused, eco-friendly, Edmonton area business, please email me or leave it as a comment below. I’d love to add to this list and have it be a useful, growing resource for anyone trying to incorporate meaningful, local, eco-friendly changes into their lives.
This Guide features:
- Blenderz Garment Recyclers
- Carbon Busters
- Carbon Environmental Boutique
- Camola Foods
- Change Toothpaste
- Consignment Stores & Thrift Shops
- Earth’s General Store
- Earth Warrior Lifestyle
- Find Edmonton
- Jar’d Mercantile
- New Classics
- PLANTiful Apothecary
- Poppy Barley
- Siempre Eco
- Simpatico Makers
- Simplify Sustainable Living
- Soap So Co.
- Something Earthy
- The Beauty Parlour
- Workhall Studio
+ even more eco-friendly and sustainability-adjacent non-profit orgs, associations and other ideas to help you take individual actions to create a more sustainable lifestyle listed at the bottom of the blog post!
Blenderz takes unwanted clothing and textiles, sorts them into different streams to be resold or reused to create new items. People can basically pay by the pound for textiles, order delivery boxes of good clothes, try craft kits using recycled materials, or do classes to learn how to reclaim textiles. Thanks to Juicy Green Mom for explaining it simply / offering an in-depth look at the business on her blog.
Carbon Busters is an Edmonton-based zero carbon / net zero builder and community developer that specializes in end-use efficiency and decreasing the environmental impact of communities and buildings through the integration of zero carbon and net-zero design, carbon accounting, education, renewable energy, PassivHaus, LEED® and advanced green building practices.
Edmonton-based Carbon Environmental Boutique is an eco-conscious, green beauty + sustainable living boutique started in 2001, that offers ethically made goods by makers who support fair trade and cruelty-free practices. Carbon believes true sustainability starts right at the beginning of a product’s life-cycle—with how materials and ingredients are sourced, the working conditions in which the goods are produced, the packaging and the end of life process.
Edmonton-based Camola Foods specializes in edible insects! Co-owners Claudio and Silvia want to preserve the environment and protect biodiversity. With an understanding of the environmental cost of food, they create edible insect culinary experiences (cricket powder can be turned into like, anything lol) that are not only fun and accessible, but sustainable too. Edible insects have low environmental impact and high nutrient content, especially when compared to current food production.
More than 900 million toothpaste tubes are entering landfills and oceans every year on a global scale. Toothpaste tubes take over 500 years to break down and cannot be recycled.
Edmonton-based Change Toothpaste tablets removes the need for a tube altogether. Packaged in compostable pouches, they reduce your environmental footprint while giving you a clean, fresh brushing – without any harsh chemicals. Change Toothpaste Tablets help you make a small change with a big environmental impact.
Consignment Stores and Thrift Shops
There’s a number of local consignment stores, thrift shops, and individual secondhand online businesses that can help make your wardrobe more sustainable. Below are just a few Edmonton area options:
Edmonton-based Earth’s General Store carries products and shares information that help people reduce their ecological and social impact on the planet. They offer items that are local, certified organic, Fair Trade Certified, and in bulk (for less packaging). They also sell food that has less impact on the environment, society, and other beings. Their Facebook Page is packed with infographics, memes and other information tied to addressing climate change and creating a positive environmental impact.
Find is a social enterprise with two goals: providing essential furnishings free of charge to individuals and families who are moving out of homelessness, and supplying low-cost, quality furniture and housewares for sale to the public. Only high quality and gently-used furniture, housewares, and decor are accepted and items inspected and cleaned before they’re put up for sale.
Edmonton-based Jack59 is a solution to plastic-free hair care. More than 552 million shampoo bottles end up in the landfill each year. It is estimated that by 2050 the ocean will contain more plastic than fish. We all have the ability to change those statistics by purchasing products that do not use plastic packaging. Each Jack59 shampoo bar eliminates up to 3 plastic bottles and their conditioner bars can eliminate up to 5 bottles. These sustainable shampoo and conditioner bars are paraben-free, sulphate-free and vegan (with some gluten-free options as well).
Leduc, Alberta-based Jar’d Mercantile offers a wide range of products for your whole life. They source products that are low waste, eco-friendly with many re-fill options. They like to think of themselves as a an old time mercantile brought into the 21st century – caring about suppliers, customers, and community, turning the old way of shopping into the new way.
New Classics is a sustainably-driven e-tailer based in Edmonton, that merges social responsibility and environmental awareness through their curated edit of slow fashion brands. They exist to introduce, benefit, support, and connect the creators and designers who are initiating the way for the Slow Fashion Movement.
PLANTiful is a lymph-loving, zero-waste herbal apothecary based in Edmonton, Alberta. They make products in small batches to ensure freshness and purity. They use the whole plant in extractions making their own ingredients for many of products. They forage for wild botanicals grown in and around Edmonton. Products are plant-based and are FULL of them, making them PLANTiful! Local, organic, vegan, environmental friendly packaging. The mateirals used from flowers to herbs, oils and ingredients from local farms, even to plantable containers, are selected with the utmost care for you and the environment.
Poppy Barley is a Canadian luxury fashion brand based in Edmonton, focused on sustainable and ethical fashion. The have a number of sustainability goals and ongoing efforts include launching a shoe recycling program, factories, reducing package foot prints, joining The Leather Working Group to develop and maintain protocols for environmental compliance of the leather industry, engaging customers through sustainable challenges, and launching a PBPLNT collection made from sustainable, plant-based cactus leather.
Re:Plenish is an Edmonton-based retail store that focuses on zero waste and sustainable products, including bulk refills of personal and home care products.
Re:plenish is committed to bring you zero waste options for your home and personal care products—zero packaging, compostable or reusable packaging. They offer products in bulk and they focus on using local products where possible.
Edmonton-based Siempre Eco focuses on handmade eco-friendly alternatives to kitchen and wellness products. Founder and an CEO Rabia realized the financial costs of leading an eco-friendly life is the main barrier to access it, so she wanted to change the game by not only providing cost-effective options, but sharing tools and knowledge that will allow all to gain expertise and create eco-friendly alternatives as well.
Edmonton-based Simpatico Makers’ beeswax products is a sustainable replacement to plastic food wrap. Made from 100% cotton and beeswax and nothing else. Makers beeswax wraps work great on wrapping anything. Great for cheese (doesn’t mold), lemons, limes , onions, apples , herbs, sandwiches, bowls, plates etc. Can be made into bags. Cut into strips to use as twist ties. Strips also work great as fire starter, even when wet. Use as a pot liner for your plants, will keep soil moist and no molding. Take wraps hiking with you, use them as a plate. They fold up and take up no space at all. There are so many uses, especially with Simpatico Makers beeswax wraps
St. Albert-based Simplify Sustainable Living sells products to help simplify your journey to sustainability. Many are locally sourced, St. Albert area products. Simplify is a welcoming community for anyone who wants to learn more about easy, effective ways to implement zero-waste solutions into their everyday life.
Edmonton-based Soap So Co. is making a new kind of soap—artistically designed, handcrafted soaps that are sustainable, 100% vegan and cruelty-free. Soap So Co. soaps are beautiful and hand-crafted, colourful, textured and evocative, and the scents are delightful yet not overpowering (fun without sacrificing quality).
Something Earthy is based in Stony Plain, Alberta helping make it easier for you to make sustainable choices with environmentally friendly products and great alternatives to plastic. They offer a curated assortment of sustainable goods and eco-friendly alternatives.
The Beauty Parlour is all about beauty with a conscience. This salon was created in a way to be healthier for the environment, guests, and staff, designed and built primarily with recycled materials (floor made of reclaimed wood from a local grain elevator, most of the fixtures and furniture refurbished or original vintage pieces). They also carry hair products that have been carefully chosen based on performance and eco-sensitivity. They are a clean air salon with ammonia-free colour services with little to no scent properties or chemical emanation. They are committed to providing healthy hair care with a low impact on the environment.
What other individual actions can you take to create a more sustainable planet?
There are a lot of other local, sustainably-focused organizations you can integrate into your day-to-day.
- You can volunteer or donate with Leftovers Rescue Food, an Alberta organization that works to reduce food waste and increase food access (keep edible food out of the landfills and redirect it into the hands of those who need it most).
- You could volunteer, donate, or attend workshops led by Operation Fruit Rescue of Edmonton, whose mission is to raise awareness about food security by hosting fruit preserving workshops, tree pruning workshops, fruit picks, and more, empowering Edmontonians with skills needed to grow, harvest, and preserve locally-grown fruit in their backyards.
- You can volunteer or come out to learn from the Prairie Urban Farm, a one-acre, mixed crop, community food system at the University of Alberta that teaches about growing food, food security, and food resiliency.
- Consider adjusting your eating habits. Although there is some debate about whether vegan/vegetarian eateries are more sustainable, but addressing food security and shifting food production and eating habits needs to start somewhere—so a Meatless Monday for instance, using vegetables picked up from the local farmers market, or at a local Vegan or Vegetarian spot like The Moth Cafe, An Chay, or Padmanadi, may be a really great individual step to take towards a more sustainable planet.
- Speaking of Farmers’ Markets—knowing your local farmer and producer, and shopping to support them, is certainly a way to incorporate more sustainability practices into our everyday. Luckily, Edmonton’s got lots of Farmers’ Markets to choose from, like the Old Strathcona Farmers’ Market, 124 Grand Market, Callingwood Market, Bountiful Market, and Edmonton Downtown Farmers’ Market.
- Or maybe you want to be come your own urban farmer! My Own Greenhouse Cynthia Strawson is helping create hobby greenhouses for serious gardeners so you can take control of your own food security.
- Even bringing your own mugs or reusable straws to get things like bubble tea is a positive, tangible, individual action you can take! (I love bubble tea).
- And although not local, using things like the Flashfood app can help you save money on fresh food like meats and produce that are nearing their best before dates to help fight against food waste.
- Listen to sustainability-focused podcasts like What on Earth? a sustainability podcast produced in Edmonton by the Alberta Emerald Foundation and Hoopla Media, for more tangible ideas on integrating sustainability into your life.
- Find and execute actions from sustainability resources, like this How to Participate in Earth Day tip sheet from Alberta-based Y2Y (Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative).
- Choosing to align, work, partner with or spend money at companies that are dedicated to sustainable practices. For instance, I’m a proud TELUS Ambassador because TELUS is not only the Most Giving Company in the World (most dollars donated to charity and most volunteer hours spent supporting communities), but they also invest in innovative technologies and sustainable business practices that are meant to build a better future—powering smart, more efficient, greener cities and championing sustainable tech and innovation. (This is not sponsored by TELUS, I’m just very proud to be a #TELUS_Partner lol).
Got more ideas?
Let me know by emailing me or leaving a comment on this post.
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