Bucky Box : Tools for a better food system

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Bucky Box : Tools for a better food system

New Zealand
Organization type: 
Project Stage:
$250,000 - $500,000
Project Summary
Elevator Pitch

Concise Summary: Help us pitch this solution! Provide an explanation within 3-4 short sentences.

Bucky Box is a software-focused social enterprise working towards a better food system. We're all about a food system that's better for our people and planet.

We're building web software to help Vege Box Schemes and CSAs become more efficient by automating many of their labour intensive operational chores.

We're also working on our mission via community engagement and supporting other organisations that are working to the same goal.

About Project

Problem: What problem is this project trying to address?

Our food systems are failing us, and pressure is increasing on them every day. Over the last 30 years our supermarkets have grown drastically, and in turn they have forced our farms to grow or shut. Our farms & farming techniques have become industriallised; pouring more oil-based fertilisers, pesticides, & herbicides into the production cycle, and going deeper into mono-cropping practices. This is a ponzi-scheme of agricultural techniques, as the soil health which delivers the nutrients to the food, is being destroyed. Our range of food types has plummetted, leading to international recognition of the relative fragility of our current agricultural systems - with big questions arising about how we're going to feed 9-10 billion people. In the meantime, farmers have been paid less, customers have paid more, and record profits have flowed to chemical & seed companies and large-scale food distributors. Decentralsing our food distribution is a key goal to establish more resilient food systems which work for all living systems - for people & planet. Local food systems can support small scale sustainable agriculture, as well as drive food security, healthier & fresher produce, soil health, local economies, community development, and wide-reaching environmental benefits of conscious guardianship of land, water & soil health. Check out the Bucky Box vision here: http://vimeo.com/31703043

Solution: What is the proposed solution? Please be specific!

Our solution offers powerful tools to local food distributors that they would never have the money to develop on their own. You could look at Bucky Box as the disruptive innovation to local food distribution, that Twitter & Facebook have been to Communication. With the tools in the hands of the people who need them most, a lever for change is tipped which can have broad brush changes to agricultural techniques around the world. Our plan to get Bucky Box to the 1000's of people around the world working on local food distribution, is through mass word of mouth through social media, conferences, and online advertising. We are also reinvesting the majority of our profits back into the Local Food movement through partnerships, philanthropy, seed investment. We're focusing on the people who are working on a similar vision as ourselves, but working on underfunded areas or ones with no tradining incomes; such as advocacy, research, education & awareness. We expect this work to further drive awareness of the innovative solution Bucky Box presents.
Impact: How does it Work

Example: Walk us through a specific example(s) of how this solution makes a difference; include its primary activities.

Bucky Box is the 'operations team' for local food distribution. It manages the ordering, customer accounts, packing & delivery logistics, billing & invoicing. A typical local delivery scheme will need 2 days of admin to manages all the complexity of getting the right food to the right people at the right time. Bucky Box can reduce this admin to 2 hours through powerful, flexible, simple-to-use software. Less admin means there is less barrier to scaling up, and more efficiency means local food distribution becomes an economically viable competition to the few large supermarkets. Less time spent on admin, means local food distributors can spend more time reaching more people + growing their scheme. It also means more people can get started in setting up local food distribution hubs & schemes, to provide a greater market for locally produced food grown through sustainable agriculture techniques. Check out our 'customer' video here: http://vimeo.com/38006467

Marketplace: Who else is addressing the problem outlined here? How does the proposed project differ from these approaches?

There are several small organisations beginning to emerge in local food distribution. Many of them are standard software companies which have seen a market opportunity. Some are smaller 'one man band' type operators who have become involved in local food & set their skills to work on the problems they see. We see all the emerging companies working in this space as relative allies aiming for the same goal. There are various different approaches, and we think all are important 'shades of grey' in the overall solution to re-localising our food systems. There's some interesting case studies here: http://bit.ly/xvVo9D Obviously there will be competition, but this is an emerging market with huge growth potential; we are confident that we will be a significant player in the future of software solutions for local food systems.