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How it works

Scroll down to learn more about the sticker, how the Reduces community involves both individuals and businesses, and how everyone can be a part of the movement.

Roncy Reduces Group_photo credit Chris C

Roncy Reduces members shopping zero waste and car-free. Photo credit: Chris Cabral.

BYO is welcome here.

The purpose of the BYO window sticker is to lower barriers for waste reduction. It means that you can BYO – Bring Your Own – reusable bag or container to this store, coffee shop or restaurant, no hesitations or second thoughts needed. The sticker says: you can do that here! 


The sticker also shows that the business supports this local environmental initiative, cares about its own footprint and wants to reduce single-use plastic waste. That’s worth supporting!

By the way, you can find a list of participating businesses by going to Find your neighbourhood and looking on the neighbourhood pages.  

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SCR volunteers with stickers Jan-2020 -

How did the sticker

get there?

Reduces Groups go out to businesses in their neighbourhood and ask them if they will help to reduce single-use plastics, allow people to BYO and display the sticker. In return, the local Reduces group promotes them on social media, and spreads the word about them at events and in neighbourhood flyers.


How it works for shoppers like you and me

The first step for every low-waste journey is recognizing that things can be done differently. For example, there’s no reason the rice you buy must come in a disposable package that gets thrown away immediately upon use when you can get rice in bulk and put it into a reusable bag or container. 

BYO offers a lot of possibilities to reduce disposable packaging! Look for the sticker or browse our neighbourhood page. Depending on the type of store, coffee shop or restaurant, you can bring your travel mug for tea or coffee, reusable containers for takeout food, a reusable water bottle, produce bags for fruit and veggies, cloth bags for bread and bulk food such as rice, nuts and snacks, reusable containers for deli items such as meat, fish and cheese, and of course always a reusable shopping bag. 

How it works for individuals

St Clair Reduces volunteers ready to hit the streets to talk to businesses about BYO.




If you're ordering takeout,

let them know that you want to BYO and ask when you

need to drop off

the containers.



When going grocery shopping, check your list to decide how many bags and containers you will need to bring. Bring a couple of extras in case.

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Feel good

Enjoy your waste-free purchase!


Remember: every BYO

action is one less

piece of plastic.

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Every business can participate in waste reduction. All you need to do is allow customers to BYO when visiting your business and display the BYO sticker at your door to let people know that they are welcome to bring their clean bags and containers when they shop. And we’ll promote your waste reduction efforts on social media!


Ready to join?

If there isn’t a Reduces group in your area, consider starting one or contact us

How it works for businesses

How it works for businesses
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What else can my business do?

  • Ask customers if they need a bag instead of offering one automatically, or - even better - eliminate single-use bags entirely

  • When someone orders something, ask them, “Will you be putting this in your own container, today?”

  • Post signs that you encourage your customers to BYO containers

  • Tell your customers that BYO saves you money on bags or containers

  • Offer a small reward when your customers BYO (for example, 10 cents off)

  • Charge a small fee for single-use coffee cups

  • Use your social media channels to remind customers to BYO on their next visit

More ideas for all types of businesses:

  • Offer reusable containers, bags or other waste reduction tools for sale (for example cloth produce bags or package-free soap)

  • Sell reusable products

  • Sell upcycled products

  • Offer local products 

  • Source products that have an end-of-life solution – products that will be truly recycled or composted. For example, biodegradable wooden dish brushes can replace plastic dish brushes

  • Promote the environmentally friendly products you offer

  • Purchase from suppliers who use minimal packaging or offer returnable packaging

  • Reduce your display packaging and unnecessary wrapping 

  • If people can order online from your store avoid plastic packaging such as bubble wrap and plastic envelopes and reuse all packaging that comes with shipments you receive 

  • Advertise the Reduces campaign in your neighbourhood: tell your customers about it, and let your social media followers know 

  • Keep track of the increase in waste-free purchases and tell us about them – so that we can share your successes with others 

  • Any other great ideas you are willing to implement!

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For your business: Reusables are safe

If you have concerns about welcoming reusables in your business, check out our health and safety page for reports and statements backed by science and experts about the safety of reusables.

If you have questions or would like assistance reducing your waste, reach out!

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Want to bring this initiative to your neighbourhood?

Click the button below to learn more and get started reducing waste with your community, in your community!

Beaches & Danforth Reduces tabling at Withrow Park Farmers Market, 2019

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