They are sprouting like little plants from the ground and doing so successfully: regional b2b marketing platforms for producers and utilisers of products from regional agriculture. How do they work exactly? And what advantages do they offer for both sides? The Umweltzentrum Dresden invited participants to a digital exchange on the topic of regional gastronomy. Gastronomers from the Dresden project region, natural food salers and other actors from various projects and marketing initiatives took a look at the structure of the existing regional economic relationships between gastronomers and producers.
At the beginning, three short presentations provided impulses for discussion: Robin Ehrhardt from the Competence Centre for Nutrition presented the gastronomy platform Wirt sucht Bauer and Philipp Kögler spoke about the digital marketplace lefoodie for regional producers and restaurateurs in the greater Leipzig area. In addition to the two marketing platforms, Stefan Mansfeld from the Saxon State Office for Environment, Agriculture and Geology presented the consumer portal regionales.sachsen.de. The event was moderated by Julia Leuterer from the Local Agenda Dresden.
After the presentations a lively discussion evolved:
- Producers and users often lack knowledge about each other and their products and needs. This is made transparent with the help of these b2b portals and with just a few clicks one can find each other and thus also new sales channels. The need for a regional marketing platform is definitely there, but the challenges are logistics, a sufficient product range and demand-oriented quantities.
- The willingness to pay for regional products can be very high among guests as end customers. The prerequisite for this, however, is convincing storytelling about the producer and the origin of the products from the region.
- For some catering businesses, especially larger ones, it is important to purchase goods in bundles in order to avoid too many delivery routes. In the usually stressful everyday business with few time resources, it must be possible to place an order with just a few clicks.
- Personal contact between producers and gastronomers should not be underestimated as the basis for a good business relationship.
After the event, there was a high demand on the part of the gastronomy for contacts to producers and for the further development of regional sources of supply. These and other topics in the area of regional added value will be addressed by the OLGA project in the coming months.
After an introductory speed-dating on project-relevant issues, the project partners reported on their work in the individual fields of action. A trial area was acquired in Peickwitz near Senftenberg to investigate the ecosystem services of agrowood plantations. Another trial area will be visited in January 2021 in the Tharandt Forest. At the "Mortelbach" trial site near Waldheim in Central Saxony, further 3D laser scans will be implemented at the beginning of the year to analyse the structure of the wooden structures near the river banks.
In spring 2021, plant physiological studies will be carried out on the agrowood plantation trial area in southern Brandenburg. Potential analyses for sustainable agriculture and energy wood cultivation in the Dresden region are going on. The results will be published here soon. The partners are preparing a public discussion event in Dresden on regional financing instruments and cooperation structures for mid-2021 with the hope of meeting there in an analogue format and thinking about sustainable city-regional solutions in the field of food in person. Networking with stakeholders and regional initiatives are currently in process.