Latest news from Big Barn and our producers.
Do supermarkets make a billion £ profit from providing so many of us with a fantastic service, or by quietly betraying our trust and ripping us off?
Most people perceive supermarkets as a brilliant way to shop. Everything in one place and great value because they have so much buying power and economies of scale, ‘it must be cheaper?’
Well, yes, they do have incredible buying power and dictate prices to farmers. My family, for instance, grow onions, and last year got £110/tonne from the local buyer, making the family a very small profit. At the same time we see many adverts showing how each supermarket is cheaper than its competitor.
We are encouraged to believe that the supermarket we choose is the best and we can trust them to give us the best deal. I perceive this to mean that they buy for the best price they can and add a small margin to cover costs and make a small profit.
Our onions, however, were on the supermarket shelf priced at, the equivalent of, £850/tonne, a huge increase from £110. And when I bought a glass bowl from a warehouse type Tesco last week, I paid 30% more than my girlfriend at a cookware shop. Not surprising that last year one of the big chains made over £1billion profit.
To me this is a betrayal of trust and I will avoid supermarkets wherever possible. I really hope other people will be a bit more careful and be open for alternatives.
At BigBarn for instance, we can help people find better, cheaper food and in some cases more convenient. Better because buying local means fresher and accountable, cheaper, because seasonal food grown locally has less supply chin cost and more convenient as, for people like me, the supermarket is a great deal further away than the farm shop & butcher.
So please try BigBarn and tell your friends. Simply type in your post code and click on the icons to see who is on your local map. Look out for the ‘£’ sign on icons, meaning cheaper than the supermarket and ask which products are cheaper. The more you shop and communicate, the better the service will become as local producers are encouraged to grow more.
If you are a producer or retailer and interested in getting on our map, we will not rip you off. We are a Community Interest Company meaning we can’t take fat cat salaries or sell out to the highest bidder. Everything we do is in the interest of our ‘producer’ and ‘consumer’ communities.
Or join the food industry yourself and Crop for the Shop!