It is a business initiative (transformation, distribution and sale) of organic products bought from local producers and sold in returnable containers.
This business initiative carries out its activity through short supply channels, food production and processing on an agroecological basis adopting the following actions:
- Eliminate waste related to packaging (mainly plastics and tetra-Bricks) thanks to the packaging in reusable glass containers, which return to the chain through a return system at the points of sale.
-Using food products (inputs) from certified agroecological origin and short supply channels: "production and consumption biodistrict".
- The investment is made through collective and cooperative participation. This model is extended (on a voluntary basis) to the management of processes, product development, promotion, distribution and sale.
The interest and benefit of the practice is its incidence in the agri-food model of the area, due to the improvement of agronomic practices, improvement of biodiversity and groups linked to agricultural production, as well as the incorporation of responsible habits in food consumption by part of some consumers. Therefore, the main beneficiaries are directly all those involved in the production process, farmers who supply the factory, retailers who benefit from the advantages of a short channel, and direct consumers who access quality and sustainable products. Indirectly, the general population benefits from sustainable agricultural practices, which generate employment and which consolidate the population in rural areas with a tendency to depopulation.

Resources needed

Formed by 27 partners who have invested approximately 100,000 euros of their own funds. Financing of 12,000 euros has also been obtained thanks to the Granada Solidarity Fund, linked to Fiare Banca Cooperativa Ética. Part of the partners collaborate voluntarily in all production and selling phases

Evidence of success

It has registered a sustained increase in sales reaching the breakeven point. So far 2 jobs have been created and a third job is expected shortly.
More than 85% of the packages are returned. Purchase from local producers is assured. The use of short supply channels implies a significant reduction in CO2 emissions in transport.
A positive social impact is generated by promoting internal democratic governance, responsible food consumption habits and a more sustainable environment

Difficulties encountered

Cost-effectiveness. Cost of artisanal processes and lack of economies of scale.
Diversification: Need to expand the range of products, especially with greater added value.
Financing: Increase it while maintaining founding values.
Cooperative work management. Creation of functional working groups

Potential for learning or transfer

This initiative shows that through the local social economy, with small contributions of collective capital, a viable and sustainable business activity can be achieved.
This is the result of the combination of collective financing, voluntary cooperative work, inputs from local producers, the use of a local store network, and the use of returnable packaging.
This improves the resilience and empowerment of the regions, the entire project has been built on the principle of replicability for other territories.
It is a model that can be transferred to any local industry for activities that do not require high initial capital investments and can acquire raw materials locally.
In addition, the practice of returnable packaging can be implemented in any industry that is willing to do so. This returning model (paying 0.5 euros more in the purchase than is returned when returning the container) can be easily implemented, as it does not require any specific administrative adaptation
Main institution
Diputación de Granada
Andalucía, Spain (España)
Start Date
May 2018
End Date


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