Primped, packaged and pesticide-heavy food may not be what the majority of people want to buy and eat, but finding affordable and convenient alternatives to it are limited. Many people would like to eat locally grown food that pays a fair wage to producers, but the mass-distribution of food, carried-out by the majority of supermarket chains, remains the pervasive model.
The Food Assembly wants to offer a fairer system by giving everyone access to local produce at reasonable prices. All food is sourced and sold locally on the internet and through social networks. You begin by signing-up to the platform and then it’s up to you to select what you want online. Collection takes place in your neighbourhood, and the farmers and producers, who grew and harvested what you have bought, are there to speak to. The startup states that buying organic veg direct from sellers is 33 per cent cheaper than buying from the supermarket, and sellers receive 80 per cent of all the sales they make. Fair profits, lower prices and the ability to interact with producers is what has made the project so successful.
Yet it’s the technology at the heart of the Food Assembly which sets it apart from other initiatives. Marc-David Choukroun founded the organisation in Toulouse in 2010, and since then has developed an advanced platform which hosts over 100,000 members across Europe. Each local assembly has its own page on the platform connecting you with your neighbours and the people behind your food. Assemblies are active in France, the UK and Italy, and new networks are currently being built in Spain and Germany.
Marc-David Choukroun, Founder