Johannesburg’s first package-less grocer. Picture supplied

Many of us routinely reduce, reuse and recycle in order to lessen the mountain of waste sent to landfill each day. 

Sadly though, this isn’t enough and we’re still facing a world where there will be more plastic in our oceans than fish by 2050. 

Thankfully, the new global phenomenon of zero waste stores is making it easier to make the right choice for our planet – and The Refillery has opened its doors as the first zero waste store in Johannesburg.

The is an exciting, new planet-friendly grocer offering a stylish, convenient, plastic- free, ‘weigh-and-pay’ shopping experience that helps you to stock and restock your pantry with the highest quality, ethically-sourced products without all the wasteful packaging normally associated with a trip to the grocery store. Goods are displayed in bulk containers and customers can fill shop- bought (plastic-free) containers with the quantity that they desire, or bring their own reusable containers to save even more.

Currently available nationwide online at, the store will launch its first physical store in the Cedar Square Shopping Centre in Fourways, Johannesburg in March. The online and bricks-and-mortar stores will both offer a home delivery and refilling service, plus a call and collect facility.

Both stores are a culmination of a long-held dream for husband and wife team, Sam and Dom Moleta. Having spent six years working in the yachting industry and then in Thailand, the Moletas saw first-hand the impact that plastic waste has on the oceans and vowed to find a way to make a difference.

“The pollution that we saw in some parts of the world was so awful that we chose not to swim most of the time,” says Sam. “Sadly, river and ocean dwelling creatures don’t have the luxury of making that choice, so we decided to focus on how we, as a small family, could make a change and provide what was needed in South Africa and, particularly, Jo’burg. So we quit our jobs and used all our savings to self-fund The Refillery.”

The zero waste ethos tends to walk hand-in-hand with sustainably and responsibly sourced produce and The Refillery is no exception. 

Shoppers can expect to find exceptional quality, locally sourced and mostly organic pantry staples such as nuts, grains and pulses, pasta and rice, cereals, superfoods, dried fruits, baking goods, teas, coffees, herbs and spices, and snacks, as well as a comprehensive range of products to support a zero waste lifestyle. These include a skincare range, household cleaning and personal hygiene products, as well as plastic-free shopping bags and storage containers.