By: Izzy Pankey
When it comes to the purchases you make at the grocery store, your choice of product has a major effect on our environment. Consumers produce 2,072 pounds of waste per year and only 34% of those consumers recycle. Most of that waste produced and recycled still has some life in it, so what can you as a consumer do to cut down on your waste production and join a revolution of reducing and reusing?
Angie Repsher, owner of Ecotastic Refill Station in Jenks, figured out a way for people to shop and get their household necessities, without producing more waste and even putting their old product containers back into use. When Repsher had an old Tide Pods container laying around that she knew still had life in it, she decided to take hers and others reusing abilities to the next level. Repsher opened Tulsa’s first ever refill shop where consumers can cut down their waste and put their old containers back into good use.
Ecotastic Refill Station is a place where shoppers can bring in any old container and refill it with their everyday essentials without having to purchase new containers every time they shop. You simply bring in your container (Laundry detergent bottle, soap bottle, jar, shampoo bottle, etc.) and weigh it. You write down the weight of your container on a sticker, go refill your container with the desired product, then bring it to the front to check out. They will weigh your product again and do all of the math for how much product is in your container, and how much to charge you for. They charge you for only the price per ounce of the items you purchased, not the container itself. The store has plenty of bottles for you if needed, but they always encourage reusing and bringing in your own.
More than 8 million tons of plastic ends up in the ocean every year; that is equivalent to dumping an entire garbage truck into the ocean every minute. While recycling your bottles and containers is always a great way to reduce this amount of plastic waste, why not take it a step farther and put them to use again? By recycling something that still has use, you’re still creating waste. Repsher wanted to create a place where people can do this without having to go out of their way to do so. Ecotastic prices are even in line with big box retailers, making it easy and affordable to shop healthily and sustainably.
“This is not just a new store,” Repsher states. “This is a change in mindset and a concept in changing people’s behavior.”
Ecotastic has everything you could need for almost every person. They carry everything from dog shampoo and household supplies, to men’s personal hygiene and sensitive skin facial wash.
Repsher and her husband/business partner make their products or source their products from small businesses. They make sure all of their products meet their strict standard of a simple combination of: Certified Organic, Biodegradable, Family Business, Non-Toxic, Hand Made, Socially Responsible, Fairtrade, Leaping Bunny Certified Cruelty Free, Bcorp, Vegan/Gluten Free, Made in the USA, and Clinically Tested. They want products that do not harm anyone. Most of their products have the ingredients listed on the label as well so you know exactly what is in your products.
In current times, opening a business can be hard especially as some people are still figuring out what they’re comfortable doing and places they’re okay with going. Repsher knew this could pose a problem, but did not let it stop her from pursuing this opportunity whatsoever.
“Life is gonna get in the way of everything you want to do,” Repsher explains. “And you can choose to make excuses and find reasons not to do things, or you can push through.”
Ecotastic is locally sourced and operated on Jenks Main street located next to Sugar Booger. The store is open Tuesday through Saturday from 9-6. Repsher recommends coming in and checking out the store and products then filling your containers so you know what you want from the many options. Check out their website https://ecotasticok.com/ for more info.