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Plastic substitutes for sale at Phuket social enterprise shop

Sep 20. 2019
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By The Nation

A Bangkok-based social enterprise is making its debut in Phuket with the opening of a new zero-waste shop, cafe and vocational training centre.

The shop in Cherngtalay, run by Steps With Theera, provides a range of plastic substitutes including bamboo straw sets, bamboo toothbrushes and SuperBee wax wraps, alongside a refill station with beauty products from HUG and cleaning products from Conscious Living and Pungungreen.

Steps with Theera runs vocational training centres for young people and adults with learning differences. Alongside the training centres, it runs businesses for the trainees to get hands-on work experience.

Max Simpson, one of the Steps founders, said: “Our mission is about providing opportunities for people with learning differences to demonstrate their capabilities, and how they can add value to all types of workplace. We wanted to extend the range of options for our trainees and graduates beyond cafes so we’re really excited about this new venture. Zero-waste seemed the natural choice for us, since we take our environmental responsibilities very seriously and have pledged to go plastic-free in all our cafes by the end of October 2019.“

The shop will give trainees the chance to learn some key skills including measuring and weighing, stock taking and running workshops, he added.

The shop opened to the public on September 9. The vocational centre is already running and taking on trainees, with the cafe due to open later this year.

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