Below is a list of answers to questions you might find useful.
If this doesn't answer your question please get in touch using the 'Reach Out' button in the main menu.

How does the refilling process work?

The diagrams above explain the refilling process. It's really easy but if you are unsure at first please ask a member of staff.   Weigh your container if you have one. The scales will print a barcode which contains the weight of your container, this can be used again so you don't need to reweigh that container the next time you come in.     If you are using a paper bag just skip the first part. Fill your bag or container and then return to the scales to select the product and print a barcode (this contains the use by date, price and weight of what you have purchased). If you prefer to miss out the last stage, and you have already weighed your container, you can come straight to the till and pay.

Liquids work slightly differently. Because liquids are different densities they cannot be weighed on scales accurately. For example 100ml of water would weigh 100g but 100ml of thicker liquid would be heavier and weigh more.   So please don't weigh the container for your liquid. If you are reusing an existing container it will probably have the ml on the container already. If it does just simply refill and bring it to the till. We will charge you for the ml on your bottle.   If you have a bottle without a ml indicator on then please seek assistance from a member of staff before you start to refill. A simple calculation can determine the volume inside your container.

When buying detergents we do recommend that you use the original bottle to refill so that you know exactly what's in it and have all the ingredients listed. This is important if you have children because although our products contain naturally derived ingredients they may also be harmful if ingested.

Can I bring my own containers?

Yes absolutely! We would encourage you to use whatever you have at home that can be refilled. If you don't have anything or have forgotten to bring something, we have paper bags for free and we also sell a range of jars.

How do I contact or find out more information about your shops?

You will find details for all of our shops, including opening times, on the main menu 'Locations'. You can also click on the picture of the shop on the homepage.

Is plastic prohibited in the shop?

No definitely not. We are not plastic haters we just believe that plastic should not be single use or used unnecessarily. If you have plastic items already you should use them as much as you can before you try and recycle them.

What delivery options are there if I order online?

We currently have a click and collect service and we aim to have your order ready to collect within 24 hours.  

We also have a local Cargo Bike delivery service (within a 5 mile radius of the shop). If you are further than 5 miles we now have a van delivery service so we can reach within a 25 mile radius of EH9. It's a flat fee of £5 for both services. We aim for next day delivery if you order before 4pm. If you have a specific time you prefer please mention in the 'additional instructions'.

We can also deliver via Royal Mail, however we can only post non-perishables. Postage is calculated at check out.

What are online orders delivered in?

All dry loose foods and fruit and vegetables are delivered in brown paper bags. If you order liquids and need it delivered you will also need to purchase a glass jar. At this time we are not accepting returns due to Covid hygiene restrictions, however we hope to offer this service again in the future.   If you are collecting your order from the store, you can order liquids online and then fill in your own jar when you collect your order. This is still useful for reducing your time in store.

How do you ensure that all your products are ethically sourced?

We care passionately about doing the right thing for people, place and planet. We work with selected key wholesalers who have strict policies on who they deal with.   Every product has a specification so that we can check the authenticity of the origin and standard.   For products that we source direct and that are produced outside of the UK, we request an ethical audit certificate to assure us that the product has been produced ethically and with consideration for people, place and planet.   We will not stock a product without this. Even if they claim the product is eco friendly. Unfortunately there are still numerous bad practices in manufacturing throughout the world, including slave labour, child labour, bonded labour and poor working conditions. If you require more information about any of our products and its authenticity and ethical status, please ask a member of staff or get in touch via the contact form on this website.

Is refilling safe & hygienic?

Yes. Most of our dispensers are gravity fed, which means what goes in first comes out first. Our scoop bins hold products that sell quicker and hold a smaller amount so they are emptied and washed regularly, as are the gravity bins.   We refill all our products in an area in the back of the shop to prevent any contamination. Each batch is recorded so that we always know exactly what's in each dispenser, where it has come from and what the shelf life is. Everything in the shop is hygiened throughout the day and every evening. All scoops, tongs and funnels are sanitised every evening and throughout the day if required in busy periods. We do request that you wash your hands before interacting with the shop, only bring in clean containers and use a funnel if using your own container (this prevents cross contamination with the dispensers).  

What if I have an allergy?

If you have a serious allergy we would recommend that you don't come into the shop. Due to the nature of refilling allergens could be airborne and this may pose a serious risk to you.   For less serious allergies we do have allergens clearly marked on our products, however if you are unsure please ask a member of staff.   Our refilling process is done in allergen order to minimise the risk but the risk cannot be totally eliminated.

What if I overfill ?

At first its difficult to determine what 100g of chickpeas looks like, however you will quickly get used to this. To start with just put a small amount in at a time or you can ask a member of staff to fill for you.   If you do make a mistake and overfill we can only remove it if its in one of our paper bags. If you have filled into you own container we cannot cannot put it back due to risk of cross contamination. Therefore you will be expected to pay for it.

Do you have other shops in the UK?

Not yet! However we are launching our franchise recruitment early October.   This will give others the opportunity to become part of The Refillery Community.   Opening up franchise opportunities will mean that we will soon have shops all over the UK. By building our community we will also be able to help save you money as we will buy larger quantities at better prices. This is vital to ensure we remain competitive in the high street and means we can bring this type of ethical shopping to more people. If you are interested in franchising please fill out the form in the Community section.

What happens to all of the plastic and other waste from the shop?

All of of our waste is sorted into paper, card, plastic, tin, food and general waste.   The waste is then managed by Changeworks, a charity that recycles and disposes responsibly.   Our general waste goes to waste to energy incineration so you can be sure that non of our waste goes to landfill.   You will notice that we use a lot of 'blue roll' for spills and drying hands, this is processed with our food waste.

Can the paper labels and till receipts be recycled?

No, you cannot recycle these at home, however we can recycle via Changeworks, our waste management provider. They both go into paper pulping. Because it's a relatively low amount of sticky labels and receipts they can allow it into their process, however domestic waste recovery services cannot do this.   Please feel free to give us your till receipts and labels back to recycle.