ABOUT OPEN FOOD NETWORK
Software designed for food
The Open Food Network software platform allows farmers to sell produce online, at a price that works for them. It can be embedded in your own website, or hosted on ours. It has been built specifically for selling food so it can handle tricky measures or stock levels that only food has – a dozen eggs, a bunch of parsley, and a whole chicken that varies in weight, anyone?
It’s a great shopfront to sell food through as an individual enterprise, but where it really gets exciting is when there’s a community of farmers working together.
Collaboration made easy
Food producers can create an online shop, collect payments, and sell through other shops on the platform. Wholesalers can integrate with existing systems, manage buying groups and supply your produce through national or regional networks of food hubs and shops. Communities can bring together producers in your area to create a virtual farmers’ market, building a resilient local food economy.
People have used the power of this platform to create food collectives, manage food hub stock, or to take their farmers’ market online with pre-purchases to give stallholders more secure sales.
Open source for a better food system
And what’s just as important as the software itself, are the values that underpin it. If you’re trying to build a new food system – as a farmer, farmers’ market, or food hub – then why would you choose software that isn’t also contributing to a fairer food system? By working collectively rather than competitively, we share the costs of developing new software, and we ensure that our project is more resilient than the many other proprietary models that have fallen over since we started!
WHO ARE YOU?
Hubs, Producers, Groups
If you are a producer or part of a hub/ group, and Open Food Network sounds a great idea that could help your initiative…
The Open Food Network is powerful software that helps people sell online, and collaborate to build regional food systems.
An online shopfront
At its most simple, the Open Food Network gives you an e-commerce solution designed specifically for food. It can handle multiple order cycles per week with different delivery or pricing options, subscriptions, and more.
Your business, your branding
You can choose to host your shop on our site, or you can embed it in your own external site. You can share your story, social media links, and upload photos of your own products.
Build your customers
Where Open Food Network gets exciting is when you work with others. We can help you aggregate from multiple producers through one online shopfront, or enable you to sell to multiple shopfronts.
Integrate and automate
Open Food Network can integrate with other systems such as Xero and Mailchimp, and we can set up automations that make your life easier.
Monitor and understand
Monitoring your sales data can help you evaluate products, marketing, and more.
Reduce your admin
Open Food Network allows you to easily update your stock based on what you’ve produced. It can generate reports, packing slips, and help you avoid a tangle of spreadsheets!
Are you looking for a sustainable way of getting your food and you think Open Food Network could help…
As a consumer we would like to know where our food comes from and who made money from our purchase. The OFN gives us the opportunity to have transparency in the food system. As a consumer you can help support the local food system.
These are the things we care about:
Everyone in the community co-creates and shares responsibility for our global commons (the OFN platform, but more generally, the air, water, soils, etc.).
We realise that the nature of our relationship with our food is at the foundation of our relationship with life itself, and that this relationship reflects the spirit of our existence.
We support farmers and producers moving towards regenerative forms of agriculture, that (re)build resilient natural systems, taking into account the soil, air, water and biodiversity of our planet.
We believe in transparency, both in the platform we build and the organisation that supports it.
Our project empowers people to create the life they want for themselves; and gives people a real say in their food system.
Problems are best solved at the lowest appropriate level of subsidiarity.
We build a people system. Care and empathy for each other lie at its heart, celebrating solidarity, diversity, inclusivity and tolerance.
We live in a perpetually evolving world, which requires constant adaptation and agility.
Would you like to support our project and have some spare time or resources?
Are you part of a network that would like to grow their community and create a transparent food system in your area?
The Open Food Network (OFN) can just help you with that.
Why could the OFN be just right for your community?
- The OFN is a tool to help bring transparency in your regional food system.
- Small scale producers and vendors gain visibility
- Everyone who is part of the regional food system becomes visible and can connect themselves more easily
- You become part of an international community with years of experience in creating an alternative food system
- We offer guidance and support in how to work together in a more connected food system
- Everything that is created is part of the Commons – doesn’t belong to a single entity, but instead to a community
BasicFor small producers trading under 500CHF/month. Contribution requested.
- Access to all basic features including your own personalised shopfront with custom images and social media links. Sell your own products or aggregate local producers to create a food hub. There are hundreds of creative ways to build food enterprises that work for your community.
StarterNo minimum payment so no risk while you start
- All of the Basic features plus…
- Integration with Mailchimp and other newsletter tools so that you can easily keep your customers in the loop. Every new customer will automatically be invited to your newsletter list, giving you more time to create amazing newsletters
- Set up standing orders or subscriptions. CSAs can put their regular box customers on a standing order, that can be managed by the customer. Customers can then add to their order with extra bits and pieces week by week. Food Hubs can make it easier for their shoppers to remember to order, by automatically placing an order for a basic set of products each week.
EnterpriseFor commercial businesses and complex organisations
- This plan is ideal for commercial businesses seeking to update their software systems.
- OFN has a highly intergratable API meaning that the platform can connect with existing spreadsheet, sales and distributions systems. Our approach is to find the areas of your business for which OFN can save you time and money. We aim to minimise disruption by only updating the areas of your business that are costing you time and money.
THE TEAM BEHIND OFN SWITZERLAND
Gaëlle has been a researcher / food equity activist for more than 10 years. She is currently the president of the Swiss French-speaking Community-Supported Agriculture network.
Bettina is a researcher at the Centre for Development and Environment at the University of Bern and works on agriculture, agricultural policy and sustainable food systems. She is also involved outside of research in the development of alternative and sustainable food systems and is co-founder of Circuit Court Switzerland.