South Shields dad to open new plastic-free grocery store and coffee bar in former The Cake Place unit in Harton Village

An eco-friendly store where customers can shop without the need for single use plastics is getting set to open in South Shields.

Tuesday, 16th March 2021, 11:00 am

Zilch Weigh House will be opening up in the former ‘The Cake Place’ unit in Harton Village, offering shoppers the chance to cut down on their use of plastics by using refillable containers and recyclable bags to stock up on their groceries.

The Sunderland Road shop is the brainchild of Andrew Quinn, from Harton, who wanted to create a sustainable way of shopping after becoming sick of seeing his blue recycling bin fill up with plastic.

The 36-year-old said: "The name ‘Zilch Weigh House’ came from the idea of ‘zero waste.’

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Andrew Quinn is opening store Zilch Weigh House in the former The Cake Place unit in Harton Village.
Andrew Quinn is opening store Zilch Weigh House in the former The Cake Place unit in Harton Village.

"Zero waste is more like an ideology than a reality. It is something that we are aiming towards.

"We accept that plastic is a part of our lives but our goal is to try and reduce it as much as possible.

“So ‘Zilch' is our name and our target to reduce plastic over time.”

The shop will sell a range of dried food such as cereal, pasta and rice, as well as herbs and spices.

Andrew Quinn

Teaming up with zero waste store, The Paddock in Prudhoe, Zilch will also sell fruit and vegetable boxes

Takeaway coffee will also be on offer, with customers asked to bring a reusable up or buy a compostable cup from the store.

The business also plans to team up with other North East suppliers to sell artisan breads.

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"We want to create a vibe where people can come in and have a chat and a coffee while they shop in a sustainable way,” Andrew said.

The store will be Andrew’s first business venture, having worked as an NHS project manager for 15 years, a job he will continue alongside his business.

And it will be a family business – as Andrew’s wife, Claire Quinn, is set to work in the store.

Andrew, who is expecting his third child in May, says the Harton Village community have already shown support for the shop ahead of its planned Easter opening.

“People have been popping their heads in and giving us encouragement,” he said.

"Everyone is really buzzing about it.”

Zilch Weigh House will be open Monday to Saturday from 8am to 5pm and Sunday from 10am to 2pm.

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