Fill and Refill moves into bigger space, adds pop-up Sprinter van to help the Vail Valley live greener
Eco-conscious and sustainability-focused store flourishes during the pandemic
Deciding to expand your business is always nerve-wracking, but deciding to expand during a pandemic can be even more so. Allison Burgund decided to grow her relatively new business, Fill & Refill, this summer and isn’t looking back.
“I was very scared to make the move and wanted to grow gradually because I didn’t know how this year was going to go,” Burgund said. “But, I also knew that there was a need for this in our valley and I’ve had a great response from customers.”
The need Burgund is talking about is for a refill store, which allows you to bring in your own containers and refill them with household items like soap, shampoo, laundry detergent, lotion and more.
Fill & Refill is dedicated to reducing single-use plastic by selling lots of items that are unpackaged. Allison vets products for bath, body and home that can be sold in bulk, are eco-conscious and sustainable. “I’ve spent a lot of time testing these products out on my family,” Burgund said.
Burgund was a graphic designer in her previous career, but a trip to the recycling center with her daughter’s class prompted her to start her own business. “I saw all the recycling and it was just sad. I thought to myself that there’s got to be a better way,” Burgund said. Directly after that, she collected all of her household’s plastic trash for a month. “I wanted to see how my family was contributing to this and it turns out we were a pretty big contributor,” Burgund said. “You don’t know what you don’t know.”
Burgund has been educating the public since she started setting up a booth at last summer’s Vail Market and Art Show and opened up shop a few doors down from the current location in the Edwards Commercial Park last fall. Burgund soon found that others wanted to ditch the disposables and the business grew. Fill & Refill just moved into bigger digs on August 17.
In addition to the new location in Edwards, Fill & Refill has a satellite location inside the new Knapp Harvest store in Eagle Ranch. Outside the shop, there is a new Sprinter van that will be used for deliveries up and down the valley.
Businesses have also sought out this sustainable concept. Goat Training, Alpine Arts Center, The Slifer House and Drunken Goat restaurant sport Fill & Refill-logoed bottles filled with soap, lotion and hand sanitizer.
“I think I have the happiest customers of any store and people come in and say thanks for what we are doing here, it’s the best!” Burgund said.
Although Burgund loved her job as a graphic designer, she was led to do something else. “It just came time for me to take that leap and connect more with the community,” Burgund said. “I’ve made a couple of leaps in my lifetime and they are terrifying every time, but they are also greatly fulfilling.”
To learn more, visit fillandrefill.com or follow along on social media at @fillandrefillvail.