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Little Green Larder was Dundee’s first packaging free shop

Jillian Elizabeth outside her shop, Little Green Larder.
Jillian Elizabeth outside her shop, Little Green Larder.

Jillian Elizabeth eco-friendly store, The Little Green Larder and now offers veg box deliveries for those in Covid-19 isolation

How and why did you start in business?

I have always been passionate about reducing waste and helping the environment.
I wanted to shop locally for food without plastic packaging, but there was nowhere, so I decided to open a store myself and this seemed like the best way for me to make a bigger impact.

How did you get where you are today?

I spent a year saving and planning, as well as finding the right premises and suppliers for the shop.
Lots of hard work and late nights went into starting up, but I can say that it has definitely paid off.

Who has helped you along the way?

Michelle Shepherd at Business Gateway has been absolutely fantastic.
She advised me with my business plan and supported me throughout the setting up process.
Her knowledge and advice have been invaluable, I do not think I would have managed to set up as successfully without her help. She introduced me to some amazing accountants at Ascott Drummond who have also been really helpful.
My family and friends have been so supportive, they have been real advocates for the business.

How has coronavirus impacted the business?

We understand that everyone is worried about coronavirus so we have adapted how the shop works in order to lower the risk for everyone.
People can now order fruit and veg boxes and mixed food boxes that can be collected at our door or can be delivered through the Zippy D app.
It is really important that we can still serve our community and get fresh plastic free food to those who need it.
Our new system has been really popular and we are very thankful that we have been able to stay open.

What was your biggest mistake?

Not anticipating how much stock is needed. Some things sell so quickly, we have had items sell out the same day they were delivered. Although the positive is seeing the demand for our products.

What is your greatest achievement to date?

Providing a place for people to come and buy their daily items packaging free. I am overwhelmed with the amount of positive and encouraging people that come into the shop on a daily basis. Many have commented that they have been waiting for a zero-waste shop in Dundee.

Hopes for the future?

I hope to keep growing and that people keep enjoying what we do. I would love to open a second shop and perhaps even a café one day, but for now I am delighted with where I am.

What is the hardest thing about running your own business?

It’s cliché, but there are not enough hours in the day. As well as running the business and doing the daily ordering and invoicing, I can be found on the shop floor most days. There is always something that needs to be done, but luckily, I have my knowledgeable staff and volunteers to help.

Any advice to wannabe entrepreneurs?

If you have an idea then you should go for it – life is too short not to follow your dreams.

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