Contrary to the popular belief, food is not fuel. It’s essential to our existence and survival, and long-term health. Body’s energy, performance and mood spring from the same source: food. Within the food industry, that is, within the every aspect of the food cycle – production and distribution, processing and preparation, consumption and disposal, and retail – we face many challenges that need to be addressed. One of our main objectives is to support solutions that are addressing the problems of supply and demand of fresh food products and the management of perishables. Within our program, Open Call 2, FInish accelerator supported a Serbian startup OrganicNet, a social marketplace and a knowledge sharing platform that wants to bring change in the organic food industry. We are very glad to have had an opportunity to help them bring their idea to life, and proud of their achievements.
The idea behind the platform is to address crucial food related problems, supporting diverse, local, family farms and businesses, and to create new opportunities for the promotion of organic agriculture.
To offer the solution for these challenges, OrganicNet, a startup from Serbia, enters the market as a unique online social marketplace and a knowledge sharing platform.
OrganicNet social marketplace was founded in September 2015, and launched on April the 14th (the private beta version for organic food producers in Serbia was launched on March the 11th).
In the first week following the launch, the platform already had 800+ registered users who are offering and buying organic food and products. OrganicNet also received the E-COMMERCE AWARD 2016 for the best local and regional e-commerce and e-business solution from the biggest eCommerce conference in the region.
Moreover, OrganciNet is actively involved in the Food Revolution initiative, the campaign launched by Jamie Oliver, to address the problems of availability of fresh, healthy food, diabetes in children, and to tackle the child nutrition crisis.
How is OrganicNet contributing to the organic food agriculture?
As an online social marketplace, OrganicNet is a direct communication tool between consumers and producers where all users have full control over their activities.
Producers create their online stores, add products and provide detailed descriptions, set price, choose delivery options, and add a certificate to confirm the quality of food.
Consumers, who are now focused on tracing the source of their food supply, can easily find organic food and products in their vicinity, and order directly from trusted producers. The personal relationship between producers and consumers results in building a trusted community of users.
To empower the principles of fair trading, and help the users to develop trusted relationships and producers to build reputation, the platform has created the rating system enabling both producers and consumers to rate and review the whole trading process and cooperation.
As a knowledge sharing platform, OrganicNet provides a knowledge base for producers and those who want to start their own organic food business. Users can find original content from experts on everything related to the organic agriculture and organic food producers can empower organic agriculture, sharing their knowledge and know-how, and spreading best-practice.
Why is this important?
Through networking, knowledge sharing and direct communication between users, the platform aims to establish better market, filling the gaps between demand and supply, and cutting out inefficiencies, and to further develop the potential of this market.
However, OrganicNet is more than just an e-commerce platform.
OrganicNet is an initiative that promotes organic food movement and aims to become a pioneer in promoting healthy nutrition, raising awareness about ecology, environmental protection, and sustainability.
As a comprehensive solution, the platform is contributing to an overall healthier nutrition of the population.
OrganicNet marketplace is currently available in Serbian and English and the team is working on introducing new features and improvements based on users’ feedback and their needs. They are currently seeking investments to develop mobile apps and have the platform available in French, German, Italian, Spanish, Russian and Arabic.