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At GINKGO sustainability and our impact on the environment was a key consideration when setting up the business. 


The importance of caring for nature and minimising waste was something strongly instilled in us from an early age by our parents. Be it minimising the waste of water when washing the dishes, making sure all lights were off in rooms that weren't being used, or even the rather imaginative but somewhat dubious recipes to avoid food waste (think lettuce soup!), we were always encouraged to be conscious of minimising unnecessary waste. It has, however, only been in the last few years that we've really seen the effect of plastics and 'our waste' culture on the planet. The devastating impact of 'plastic oceans' and climate change has become starkly apparent and we now truly appreciate the wisdom in what our parents were trying to teaching us. 


Qayyah's first major wake-up call was back in her mid 20s (when her now teenage son was a baby) and she was shocked by the statistics that a baby will use approximately 5,000 nappies in their nappy wearing lifetime! Horrified by the thought of sending all this waste to landfill, she made the brave but somewhat smelly(!) decision to use bamboo reusable nappies and became a lot more conscious of the products she was using. For Safiyyah, a turning point was when she was working on a series of children's animations about the impact of plastics on the environment and ocean wildlife. It set her thinking about what she herself was actively doing to try and minimise this waste.

At GINKGO, we try to do what we can, where we can. That being said, we are by no means perfect in what we do (we're certainly not perfect zero wasters and still feel at the early stages of this journey ourselves - we are definitely not ones to preach!). However, we believe that big changes start with lots of people making little changes and if we can play a small part in that then we'll be happy!

Here are some of the things we try to do at GINKGO.


  • Community recycling schemes such as our popular EllaCycle Scheme where you can bring along any baby food pouches for recycling. 

  • Some of our supplement ranges offer refunds on bottles returned to the store for recycling. 

  • Recycling scheme for glass jars in dispensary - bring back your glass bottle for herbs and we'll refill it instead of charging for a new bottle. 



We're always looking for ways to reduce the use of single-use plastic across our business but here are a few of the things we are doing at the moment...

  • Unpackaged groceries - we offer dry groceries unpackaged instead of the standard plastic bags of nuts, seeds, fruits usually seen in health food shops. Read about our 'REFILLERY' here

  • Unpackaged beauty - fed up of all those layers of unnecessary packaging around cosmetic products - here at GINKGO we've stripped back skincare to their simple, natural constituents - and you can buy them all plastic free! Read about our Unpackaged Beauty Station here

  • Free water refill station - feeling thirsty whilst out and about in Altrincham? We offer a free water refill station where you can top up your water bottle (no need to buy anything in store - you can head straight for that water refill station and out again - the main thing is to reduce the number of single use plastic bottles ending up in the ocean...). 

  • Talking to brands - we encourage brands to move towards sustainable packaging instead of plastic, as well as, offering an ever increasing range of product refills. We also feedback to them just how important sustainable packaging is to our customers. 



  • Energy - all our energy is 100% renewable.

  • Food waste - we don't throw away food that can be eaten.  

  • Ethically sourced products - we offer a broad range of fairtrade, organic, and where we can, locally sourced products. We try to invest in cooperatives as much as possible and look for ethically, socially and environmentally conscious brands.

  • Materials - Wherever we could we've tried to minimise the use of plastic as a material in our store. From our bamboo shelves, surfaces and lids, to our wooden scoops and coloured glass jars made out of 100% recycled Spanish glass, we've tried to use sustainable materials as much as possible. The dustpan and brushes that we use are even made out of recycled bamboo! We also stock a range of eco-friendly body care and cleaning products that promote a sustainable lifestyle at home too.

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