Low-waste Grocery Shopping with Bulk

Join us for the Bulk Sale on Thursday, Sept. 19 to celebrate 47 years of sustainable bulk shopping!

Seward Co-op opened its first storefront in 1972. We were one of many third wave co-ops that spun out of the People’s Pantry here in the Twin Cities. Community members were looking for economic and ideological independence from supermarket chains. Many of these folks had their needs met at natural foods co-ops scattered throughout local neighborhoods and communities. The original Seward Cooop (no that’s not a spelling error) store offered only essential bulk pantry staples, similar to Tare Market or many of the other markets that are springing up around the country claiming to be the first zero-waste shopping alternatives of their kind.

Bulk enables consumers to choose an alternative to food manufacturer packaging, and to customize household meals with foods that work best for the individual. You can fill your own containers, and if you do need a bag, we have options. In addition to plastic bags, staff stocks paper bags that can be reused or recycled through residential collection. Compostable bags are also available in the Produce department. Shopping in bulk also allows folks to buy as much or as little of a needed ingredient. In addition to eliminating plastic usage avoiding food waste is another great way to minimize pollution and climate change. Bulk is an all-around great alternative and offers a way to avoid the potential of food waste too.

Seward Co-op has grown with purpose throughout its 47 year history and remains committed to positive environmental impacts. One way we demonstrate this commitment is through the Bulk department, which remains the heart of our stores. Though our square footage and sales volume have increased, shoppers still have the option to partake in a simple shopping experience as was available in 1972 by shopping bulk.

The Bulk sale includes 10 percent off on Bulk sale items. The list below is a helpful guide to let you know what to expect to find included in the Bulk sale Sept. 19!

Departments and sub-departments:
  • bulk foods
  • bulk coffee
  • bulk herbs/spices
  • bulk water
  • bulk repack
  • off-the-shelf 25-pound bags (flour, rice, etc.)
  • bulk repacked wellness items (beeswax beads, clay, Epsom salt, citric acid, lavender flowers)
  • bulk dates (produce)
  • bulk shampoo and conditioner
  • bulk lotion
  • bulk tinctures
  • bulk liquid soaps
  • bulk bar soaps
Bulk Sale exclusions:
  • Special Orders
  • Produce (other than dates)
  • Flowers
  • Containers
  • Bulk Eggs
  • Bulk Meats