Online platforms that connect consumers directly with producers are growing. These platforms allow people to support local and nutritious goods that are produced with a healthy landscape in mind. Check out some of the online platforms supporting production in 4 Returns Landscapes.
Food and drink connect us to the wider world. The contents on your plate – or in your cup – are a tapestry of different landscapes and people. Yet complex supply chains create obscurity about where the products we buy come from. The many steps between producer and consumer make it difficult to know the origin of products, how they were produced and by whom. That means that with each bite or sip you may unwittingly be supporting environmental degradation across the world.
A new wave of online food platforms are sprouting up to connect consumers directly with people who produce food well. When done right these platforms shorten and simply the supply chain. They create transparency, ensure that producers receive a fair price for their goods and can even reduce waste. All while giving us the chance to support nature-inclusive and regenerative production.
Here is a selection of online initiatives connecting producers and consumers from 4 Returns Landscapes and beyond.
Dirty Clean Food
Dirty Clean Food is an online platform from Wide Open Agriculture based in Western Australia. The platform is run by a team passionate about food and its capacity to make the world a better place. They know that by choosing a diet that is good for us and the earth, we can change the world. That’s why their products – regenerative beef, plant-based milk and seasonal vegetables and fruit – are sourced from farmers that focus on soil, raise animals with respect, draw down carbon and that strengthen communities. Dirty Clean Food went from strength to strength during the COVID-19 pandemic: the platform’s online sale volume grew more than 600% between February 2020 and March 2020.
Meat has become far too cheap, and the cost is paid in animal well-being, by the farmer, by nature and in a lack of taste and nutrition. Grutto – an online platform based in the Western Dutch Peat Meadows – works with nature-inclusive farmers. Named after the Black-tailed Godwit (Grutto in Dutch), the platform ensures that the right price is paid for meat and that animals and the land are treated with respect. Customers place an order to purchase a range of meats – beef, chicken, pork, lamb – and only when there are sufficient orders is the animal slaughtered. This means that nothing goes to waste and that the animal is treated with respect.
Grounded Ingredients is an online marketplace for wild and cultivated natural goods sourced from sub-saharan Africa. The platform mainly targets brands and sells single-origin ingredients like honey bush tea, beeswax and oils such as myrrh, jojoba and marula. Transparency is key for the platform and the marketplace is setup to ensure producers receive as much of the sale price as possible. That’s calculated at 59% of the final price. The rest goes on marketing, running the platform, packaging and transport costs. Considering an average cocoa farmer receives just 0.7% of the final price of chocolate, it’s a massive improvement. This shows that the role of the “middleman” can benefit the producer if a fair share of the value is taken into account.
The platform is currently in a pilot phase, so if you have ideas or questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to Grounded Ingredients.
AlVelAl foods is a recently launched platform that supports regenerative production in the Altiplano, Spain. The platform already offers products like almonds, olive oil, pistachios, walnuts, preserved vegetables, wine and honey. By promoting the origin story of the products, the aim is to de-commoditize them. Consumers and customers, including restaurants and supermarkets, can learn about the true source of the product, the people behind their production as well as the health benefits. AlVelAl foods is linked to a super cooperative that connects producers working with AlVelAl into one cooperative structure to generate more commercial impact. The super cooperative facilitates farmers, entrepreneurs and companies to participate in AlVelAl Foods and join the dream of restoring the Altiplano landscape.
Growing market for produce made well
All these examples show that there is a growing market for products originating from landscapes where communities are collaborating to regenerate, beautify and care for landscapes. Ensuring abundance for generations to come.
Do you know about other origin landscape food platforms? Share in the comments!