At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, farmers were not only struggling to find a market for their produce, but many families were also struggling to find enough affordable food to meet their needs.
Providing emergency food aid
With financial help from Rabobank and the City of Amsterdam, and the efforts of many volunteers, the first phase focused on providing emergency food aid for around 250 families. But right from the get-go, there was the ambition to provide thousands of low-income families with fresh, affordable, and local produced food.
The chain is kept as short as possible, meaning that there are as few links as possible between the farmer and the consumer. The produce comes directly from the Flevopolder northeast of Amsterdam, allowing farmers to receive a fair price for their products and keeping the price for the consumer as low as possible.
Families in Amsterdam with a ‘stadspas’ can order a package of fruit and vegetables online and then pick it up at various distribution points, one of which is in the basement of our historic building and staffed by volunteers from KIT and the tenants of SDG House.
“We are pleased to offer space in our landmark building to the ‘Boeren voor Buren’ initiative. It fits perfectly with the sustainable development goals we are pursuing in our work and through SDG House.”Mark Schneiders, CEO of KIT Royal Tropical Institute and SDG House Amsterdam.
In the coming months, the initiative has the ambition to serve at least 1,800 customers every week, enabling the model to become sustainable and allowing it to be scaled even further.