Eliminate waste at your place. With this little piece of advice, One Less Bottle is on a mission to revolutionize the way consumers shop for everyday essentials and update their relationship status with the material from single use to reuse. Comparing this sustainability initiative to the evolution of the shopping bag, One Less Bottle believes that all it takes is a shift in mindset. To date, the team has saved 1,500+ bottles from landfill. Teaming up with Aussie retail properties, Parkmore Shopping Centre (Parkmore – Keysborough) and Barkly Square (Brunswick), One Less Bottle is encouraging shoppers across the state to join in the zero-waste movement by refilling their eco-friendly home and body products at one of its conveniently located automatic refill stations. 

Parkmore is home to a pair of those refill stations—one for home-cleaning products and one for body-care products. 

According to One Less Bottle’s website, when it comes to participating in the process, the opportunities are endless: Refill at any time (day or night) and use a bottle, jar, container, or bucket. After locating the nearest refill station, consumers have to follow three simple steps: Select the product (press the button to choose the desired refill volume of either 500ml or 1 liter), pay for the selection, refill the bottle by placing it under the allocated nozzle, and feel to repeat regularly.

Offering accurate fillings and competitive prices, One Less Bottle sources all of the products in Parkmore’s stations from Victoria-based suppliers. Although primarily targeting eco-conscious consumers who are willing to seek out alternatives to big-box stores and mainstream supermarkets as well as travel to purchase such products, the stations also attract the attention of conventional shoppers who have yet to discover or consider eco-friendly options.

As a partnership, One Less Bottle and Parkmore have both relied heavily on word of mouth and social media to promote this initiative. The center has also focused on attracting and converting existing shoppers via in-center signage and activations, public announcements, and online event listings. Considering direct feedback from shoppers and retailers, in addition to social media engagement, the public response has been extremely positive, with shoppers interested to learn more about the products, pricing, and approach to shopping. The center has achieved strong reach through four unique posts across external community-based Facebook pages. Notably, Parkmore’s page posts indicate 11,138 reach and 2,440 engagement. 

“We understand our role includes looking after the environment to meet the needs of current and future generations and ensuring our assets and operations contribute to a positive future for all our stakeholders. GPT customers provide consistent feedback that our focus on social and environmental sustainability initiatives has inspired and supported them to implement similar actions in their own lives and so the One Less Bottle initiative is a natural fit at Parkmore,” said center manager, Elizabeth Galle.

As a bonus, there has been no cost to the center to deliver this initiative. Parkmore provides in-center space to One Less Bottle, which collects the sales from the stations—A$6.99 (or US$5.40) per liter.

Across industries, sustainability and corporate responsibility continue to top the list of business values, practices, and commitments. With this in mind, Parkmore has implemented a number of other consumer initiatives at its property, including BYO coffee cups, bag library, and eco-bag craft:

BYO coffee cups: Working with all of its café and coffee shops, the center provides a 50-cent discount to shoppers who bring their own cup or mug.

Bag library: Offering a public drop-off point where shoppers can leave single-use or reusable bags to assist those who have forgotten their own reusable bag when stopping by to do their household shopping, Parkmore supports the transition of consumer behavior, initiated by the state government’s plastic bag ban.

Eco-bag craft: Inviting families to bring a plastic bag to its craft station to swap for an eco-friendly calico one, Parkmore’s school holiday activation allowed students to personalize their bags using a variety of provided materials.