The pandemic not only highlighted the essentials of having a strong agri-food sector, but also served as a turning point, accelerating latent trends and promoting the appearance of new ones. In this difficult context was born 'Sustainable Market' , the first Spanish marketplace for sustainable products that brings directly to the consumer the work of dozens of small local producers, who stand out for their environmental and healthy practices. Driven by the Sustainable startup, which began as a network of SMEs in the agri-food sector to promote sustainability in 2018, it already has a 'brother' for the hospitality industry 'Market Sustainable Companies' that brings this type of product closer to restaurants and other establishments.
On August 4, they will also launch a guide to small sustainable Asturian producers and restaurants made up of some 25 establishments. "In the web version we break down the good practices, the recommendations of each chef to visualize all of the above and not just enjoy an excellent dish," said the founder and CEO of Sustainable Sandra Novo. All of the above has earned it several awards such as being finalists of the AgroTech 2020 awards and winning the international hackathon 'EUvsVirus' (EIC).
Productions with values that, for example, recover native breeds and maintain ecosystems. From the ecological meat of breeds such as Angus and Wagyu in the Community of Madrid, through the cultivation of algae to the conservation of ancient olive trees in Teruel. In all of them, the environmental impact prevails. «Each time, in the national market, the client seeks to consume national, sustainable and quality product», has pointed out the head of Sustainable.
In this regard, Novo explained that 'Sustainable Market' was born because "we saw problems of access to the consumer of small producers and this was what led us to propose a direct sales market". In this sense, he has verified the difference between the original prices and those finally paid by the consumer.
They currently work with about 70 growers, selected for their sustainable practices (above). Sandra Novo, founder and CEO of Sustainable (below) ABC
For all of the above, "a fairly collaborative approach" is applied in which they have had the participation of farmers, ranchers and the rest of the producers for the digital design of the marketplace. The head of Sustainability has highlighted the advantages of this new sales channel such as "very competitive prices" and that it allows the consumer "access to products, which are not on the supermarket shelves, which have sustainability values behind ». All this, in exchange for a small commission.
'Sustainable Market Companies', which replicates the 'Sustainable Market' model by putting small producers in contact with the Horeca sector (hotels and restaurants) and in which they have had the support of the Gijón City Council. Through this channel they can count on sustainable and local products "with a national origin always guaranteed and the restaurant can ask the producer or the platform to facilitate that contact."
In total, they already work with about 70 producers in total. Most already have their own space or online 'store' in the marketplace so that consumers can get more information about the sustainable practices they practice and the ecological certifications they hold. «We must now go around the 60 (online) stores created, each producer has their own, where the client can see all their producers, watch their videos and know why it is sustainable. The client has all the information at his disposal, specified by products... »Novo pointed out, who is involved in the national expansion of the two platforms.