Zero waste choices from VG Meats

September 5, 2019

Our customers are good people. This is something we’ve known for a long time, and one of the many reasons we work hard to put amazing food on your table. You care about where your meat comes from and you care about the world around you – and that means taking steps to protect the environment.

We’ve written before about our ongoing commitment to sustainable farming and what that means for us as a family and a business. Today, we want to talk about a new way we’re helping customers go green – through flexible, zero waste shopping options in store!

All taste, zero waste

You may have noticed that our meat counters don’t use plastic wrap. All steaks, chicken breasts and other cuts of meat are simply placed inside the refrigerated counter and displayed as is. Once a customer wants to buy something from us, we wrap it in butcher paper (though we sometimes use plastic bags with marinated cuts so the package doesn’t drip your fridge). That said, butcher paper is plastic-lined and we have to use a super thin plastic lining between cuts to allow for freezing and separating. We create less waste than many grocers, but we’re always looking for ways to reduce plastics throughout the store.

Furthermore, some VG Meats products are sold in plastic due to a lack of affordable, sanitary packaging options. For example, we can wrap a steak or pork chop in butcher paper, but ground beef is a bit more difficult. We can give you sliced bacon in paper when you shop in store, but we use vacuum-sealed plastic on bacon in the deli counter (this is what goes out in delivered orders as well). Many customers want to avoid single-use plastics and we agree – the less of it in circulation, the better. At the request of some eco-savvy customers, we now allow shoppers to bring in their own refillable containers for meat. That’s right – the same delicious local meat you know and love with ZERO waste!

How it works

Simply bring in a clean reusable container (a large mason jar, a glass food storage container, your favourite piece of Tupperware – whatever works)! We will weigh the empty container (this is called “taring”) and then add as much product as you want. Then, it’s weighed again, the tare weight is deducted from the total weight, and you pay for your product as usual. It’s all taste, zero waste – and everyone’s happy! You walk out with a glass container full of chicken breasts, a big jar full of ground beef, a Tupperware full of deli meat, and so on. If you’ve got a clean container, we can make it work.

Come see us in Simcoe or Stoney Creek

In addition to our new zero waste shopping options, we continue to encourage the use of cloth bags when shopping at VG Meats. We also sell beeswax food wraps in store – a great alternative to plastic wrap. If you’re interested in trying this out or learning more about lowering your use of plastic, please visit us in Simcoe or Stoney Creek. We’re always happy to chat and help you out!