MOBILE Local Economy

There have been many trials for local food and goods  market in recent years. The great idea has been to offer locally produced food and in best case organic one. The main concern related to such activity is the cost of logistic. First the producers are scattered  around and thus their time and effort for transportation is substantial.

On the other hand local consumers have the manner to visit their towns or villages on regular basis. At the The same time-basis serves both managing things and buying food from the local markets. It may still take  extra  time and effort to travel to a more distant location for local products. That is one of the reasons for non-sustainable economic circumstances for independent dealers.

One solution would be to combine the gathering and dealing of local products in two-way transport onto vechile. While on road it serves both consumers and producers along the route in question. There will be an economy of costs in both labour-time and fuel. A rough estimate is to half the logistic costs. There could be a network of routes. Several product-carrying vechiles could exchange goods at definite meeting and synchronisation stops. Each vechile has its optimal route regarding local district or region  reachable within few days or one week. The route can also vary according to season or activities involved.

Real-time data system can be developed for internet for serving optimal logistics. Each producer announce their products available. Also consumers like restaurants, private people or offices announce their present needs. Optimal routes can be decided by the chauffor or computer-aided system.

One special case will be trade or exchange of goods among ecovillages. Usually they have quite a diverse sortiment of goods for maintaing their self-sufficiency. But there are cases and potential for exchange, selling and buying. The logistic network can also deal products for wider audience with fairly optimal cost structure.

 In normal case either must be all kind of  bureaucratic procedures to fulfill like permissions and certificate to handle domestic goods. Also the lorry or bus or car must have a certified cooling systems for fresh foods. It could  be, however, possible for that logistic network to maintain only the role of  dealer. Having the contracts between producers and consumers already fixed through internet-based data-system really eliminates the role of marketing in the business. One point of view is to see this as a crowd-sourcing business-model.

There is an interesting potential to expand that network over Scandinavia and Baltic countries. First there can be a single vechile going all around the Baltic Sea. It’s main activity is to bring local products from the ecovillages and organic producers familiar to people in more distant places. It would be a kind of mobile exhibition of locality in wider context and countries. Basically and ideally it would connect eco-villages from diverse counties to the same network. There concrete goods, food, people and local designs interact in baltic context !

 Becondly there is this network of network where one local logistic unit interacts with another. In that way too distinct ecovillages in different countries can be reached. And it does not exclude the transportation on people too in small scale.

 The economic model for one transportation unit could be pure personal business , crowd-funding plus shared economy among ecovillages or organic producers or public funding for specific ecovillage based on eu- or leader-institutions.

Juhana Kallio


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