Taking back control over the food system, one buying group at a time
It’s a balmy Wednesday evening in Brisbane, but there’s hustle, bustle and shouts of greeting ringing out from underneath a classic Queenslander house. Sales are about to kick off at one of the bulk buyers groups that are emerging across the nation.
The volunteers do a final check of the prices, pull the last of the dry goods out of storage and set up the scales. When shopping is open, around 60 people descend upon the tables bursting with organic local produce that was harvested within the previous few days.
In an era of conscious shopping, people are starting to be aware that where they buy their food is as important as what kind of food they buy. Australia’s major supermarket chains control almost 80% of grocery trade. This duopoly is wielding their purchasing power in often unethical and crude ways that take away both farmer and consumer choice.
Consumer power through our grocery dollar is a popular concept. We now need to take it a step further… a step out of the major supermarket chains and into local community halls, houses and schools where bulk buying groups are making real choice about their food. Each of these largely volunteer-run groups is unique to the members who run it however at the heart of each group is the ability to provide good quality local produce at cheap prices. It’s convenient, has a range of produce available and gives you a chance to catch up on the local goss.
For those that are based in South-East Queensland, find out how to start your own bulk buying group this Sunday, March 24. The SEQ Cooperative network is “Foodies Unite: Building Community Food Options” and they’ll take you through all the details of starting or improving a bulk buying group. Get all the details: http://www.facebook.com/events/135770143256883/