Kitchen Staples is a small zero waste food store which is an extension of the the adjacent zero waste soap refill shop Soap Dispensary which opened in 2011 along Vancouver’s Main Street.
The neighbourhood refill shop’s expansion into the adjacent storefront allows the store to provide an increased offering of dispensed dry, fresh, frozen and liquid foods without the packaging or floor area associated with current grocery store practice.
Customers can bring in, or purchase, reusable non plastic containers to have them refilled again and again. The product focus is on local makers and suppliers; socially and environmentally responsible partners; and pure, organic and fair-trade goods.
Work to the existing shell was limited to the application of paint and the connection to the existing store and the concentration of the design was the functional elements which house and dispense the products. Within the space the food is situated at a single dispensing bar and a rear deli where refrigerated and frozen food is dispensed.
The shelving and woodwork is constructed of regionally produced douglas fir plywood and sized to house the 240 jars, 14 fustis, honey and syrup containers which contain the products. The wood is finished with lye and soap and painted with a gloss emulsion in the areas of high use.
Opposite the dispensing bar open fir plywood shelving is fixed to the wall through alternating gussets of the same material. The shelves displaying an array of kitchen essentials and a wide variety of zero waste lifestyle tools such as stainless steel to-go containers, reusable to-go utensils as well as a selection of glass jars and bottles, reusable produce and bread bags as well as fermentation and sprouting tools.
The long service counter is topped with soapstone sourced from a quarry in Quebec and fitted with 26 bent stainless steel and oiled ash taps which, along with a nitrogen gas distribution system, were designed and produced for the shop to dispense cooking oils, syrups, and vinegars. In accompaniment to the taps, the studio designed a seven meter long ash dowel pendant light which is situated above and suspended with washing line.