Our Deep Commitment to Sustainability

Weavers Way has a long history of environmental action, and we continue to seek ways to improve.

Our stewardship for this planet is written into our Ends.

We invite community engagement in our sustainability efforts through the Weavers Way Environment Committee (WWEC) and our Plastic Reduction Task Force (PRTF). We work together with Weavers Way administration and staff to make the Co-op sustainable.

Environmental Efforts

100% Renewable Energy Use

  • Electricity: 100% Renewable
  • Natural Gas: Renewable Natural Gas through the Energy Co-op.
  • Reuse of Heat: We capture the discharged heat from the refrigeration systems in our Chestnut Hill and Ambler stores in order to conserve energy while heating the store and our hot water.
  • Our stores utilize all LED lighting, including our refrigerated display cases.
  • We have two free EV charging stations for electric cars at our Ambler store.
  • The Weavers Way Environment Committee and staff are working towards the placement of solar panels on the Ambler store.
  • We will also be working to make our future stores sustainable in every way possible.

Commitment to Plastic Reduction

  • Since 1973, the Co-op has never provided plastic bags at checkout.
  • Shoppers are invited to use and traditionally rely on boxes recycled from product shipments.
  • All produce bags are compostable.
  • Substitution of biodegradable paper for plastic packaging when possible.
  • To combat the overuse of plastics, the Plastics Reduction Task Force was formed; this committee is charged with identifying additional ways to reduce our reliance on plastics.
  • To combat the overuse of plastics, the Plastics Reduction Task Force (PRTF) was formed in 2017 as a subcommittee of the Environment Committee (WWEC). This committee advocates for ways to minimize the Co-op’s dependence on plastic in accordance with its mission. They host a plastic reduction public forum annually to engage members.

A Focus on Local and Sustainable Products

  • We have a farm and greenhouse at Awbury Arboretum and a farm at Saul High School; we source from our own no-till farms in Philadelphia — virtually zero travel miles to get fresh produce to our stores!
  • Half of our “costs of goods” go to local vendors: Our vendors represent a diverse group of farmers and producers, creating biodiversity in our landscape as well as on our store shelves.
  • We rely on farmers that use sustainable farming practices, whether Integrated Pest Management, no-till, or organic-certified.
  • We participate in the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch Program. Our participation means that all of our fish and seafood is chosen with their environmentally friendly seafood practices as a guide.

Extensive Bulk Shopping Opportunities

Our bulk program allows for customers to shop with reusable containers.

Bulk shopping is available for a variety of products, including: traditional items such as grains, flours, and coffees; cooking liquids, sweeteners, nut butters, and vinegars; health and beauty items; household cleaning options; and more! Find out how to shop bulk here.

Reduces the use of plastic and other packaging.

Zero-waste product offerings are continuously being added.

The Plastic Reduction Task Force organizes and maintains a Jar library in all three stores so that shoppers may borrow a jar to replace plastic containers. A bag library is available in the Ambler store.

Additional Environmental Efforts

  • Reuse of building materials and we use sustainable design and building materials in our store renovations.
  • Bike racks
  • We compost vegetable food waste at our Saul Farm and recycle cooking oil from our own kitchen operations only.
  • We collect and dispose of hazardous waste accumulated while maintaining our stores via the City of Philadelphia's hazardous waste recycling events.
  • We donate perfectly good but unsellable food to Germantown Pickup. This cuts down food waste, a significant greenhouse gas source, and distributes food that might otherwise be tossed to those who can use it.

Container Refund Program

As part of our effort to reduce waste and single use plastics, the Co-op offers select products in returnable containers in various departments, including prep foods and bulk. These containers can be returned to the Co-op for reuse. A deposit is required upon purchase and refunded in full when returned to the Co-op. The Co-op then professionally sanitizes the container and puts it back into circulation for reuse.

The Co-op has already diverted approximately 13,000 plastic containers from the waste stream, and look forward to expanding the program. For more information about the Container Refund Program, or other Plastic Reduction efforts at the Co-op, email Or learn more about their Committee here.

Electronics Recycling Events

The Weavers Way Environment Committee sponsors regular electronics recycling events. They partner with PAR-Recycle Works, a non-profit organization located in Germantown that offers environmentally responsible e-waste recycling services and employs formerly incarcerated individuals. The funds raised through donations at these events support the Environment Committee’s grants program.   In 2021 alone, more than 8 tons of electronics and 550 pounds of batteries were recycled. Generally these events are held in the spring.

The next e-waste recycling event is Saturday, May 18, 2024, at Chestnut Hill College. Details coming soon.

The Weavers Way Environment Committee Community Grants Program

Between 1995 and 2021, the Weavers Way Environment Committee awarded more than $136,000 in small grants mainly for community gardens and environmental education projects. Those initiatives that address sustainability and climate change are favored. Funds for the program are raised through donations made at recycling events and at some Giving Tuesdays. Community groups from Philadelphia and nearby suburbs are invited to apply, with preference given to those close to WW stores and in underserved neighborhoods. Applications should be for  identifiable public purposes resulting in tangible improvements for the neighborhood. Grant amounts currently range from $100 to $500, depending upon available funds and number of qualified applicants. There is one grant cycle per year with an application deadline in early March.

For further information and to access the Grant Application, visit our Community Grants Program page.

Get Involved

The Environment Committee (WWEC) and the Plastic Reduction Task Force (PRTF) both welcome new members. Weavers Way is owned by its members, which creates an optimal opportunity for community engagement. Committee members fulfill cooperator hour requirements by active participation. The Environment Committee generally meets the second Wednesday of each month at 7 pm. The Plastic Reduction Task Force generally meets the second Thursday of the month at 7 pm. Check for locations online. Come and attend a meeting so you’ll know if you’d like to join.

How to find sustainability jobs in the Member Center

  1. Once logged in, locate the tab that says "My Shifts" in the dashboard.
  2. Click "Search for Shifts."
  3. Click the button near the top labeled "Find a Specific Job."
  4. In the list that appears, check the "Sustainability - Terracycle - Sort and Ship Recyclables" label and select a time frame for your search. Click "Submit."
  5. You will see a list of Sustainability shifts that are available. Select any specific jobs you would like to sign up for.

For general assistance with the Member Center, please email

You can also visit our Committees page to connect with volunteers working on sustainability at the Co-op.

Environment Committee in the Shuttle