Our Story

We are on a mission to make sustainability more accessible.

How it all started

Our co-founders, Helene and Noriko met online in Spring 2020, when Helene invited Noriko for an interview on her podcast Green Changemakers in Japan.

Soon after they started together Ekolokal, which has for mission to make sustainability more accessible.

Together with a small team, they created an eco-map connecting eco-consumers with small businesses and organised many community events to raise awareness about sustainability in Japan.


Slow ecolab

Early 2022, they opened a vegan cafe and eco-community space in Otsuka.
This space brought some amazing people together and was the opportunity for the community to explore alternative ways of consuming through the events that were held on a weekly basis (zero waste shopping, swaps, repairs, etc.).

Unfortunately, they had to close the cafe in March 2023.

The Épicerie by Ekolokal

End of February 2023, Noriko and Helene decided to launch The Épicerie, an online grocery store, allowing members to have access to organic everyday products for a cheaper price.

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  • Noriko Shindo

    Nori started her career in banking before doing a MBA at INSEAD and working at Amazon Japan.

    She became vegan 4 years ago when she met her partner, Ofer.

    They are now a family of 5 with 2 beautiful kids and Taiyo their dog.

    Outside of work, Nori is a talented violinist and enjoys cooking and baking delicious sourdough bread.

  • Helene Queguiner

    Helene is French and moved to Japan in 2018, before that she spend 8 years working in R&D in the beauty industry.

    After realising the environmental situation, she decided to change career path and be involved in the space of sustainability.

    Outside of work, she enjoys DJing, snowboarding and skiing, and travelling.