Have you REKO'ed yet?
Have I WHAT?
You will ask. REKO is for local producers to put their products and transactions online, REKO rings allow growers to advertise and sell online (without expensive online shops), and drop off presold goods at a predetermined time and place.
Dayboro Reko uses Facebook, assuming that everybody is on Facebook at the moment, I think Facebook is a limitation, but it is what it is. Some fantastic folks decided to put a Dayboro REKO Facebook page together.
The principle is vendors publish their goods on the Dayboro REKO Facebook page, and this is where customers can purchase. They contact the vendor/farmer by saying they want to buy, they then pay, and the vendor will have their purchases ready for pickup. This replaces online shops, which can be an expensive overhead for some vendors. Good value for money options are available, yet the management of an online shop takes time….. a lot of time.
So how does this work?
The Dayboro REKO Ring is for the Dayboro and Surrounding areas. I guess as time goes on the size can grow or shrink. The concept is flexible, meaning you can spawn “rings” of from the main. I guess you only do this when one ring gets to big.
For producers, the travel distance is most likely the deciding factor to either start a new one or join an existing one.
As a vendor you want to keep the supply chain effort and distance as short as possible. Quality control is key with these kind of initiatives.
Key should be to keep close by REKO rings in “the loop” so to speak, this prevents overlapping.
A REKO ring is a “commodities” market, in the sense that it is online and Customers can buy goods via a FACEBOOK page. What I like is that as a vendor, you know upfront what you sell, this is very handy when you sell fresh products such as sold by the BLUE DOG FARM.
Customers order and pay upfront then come and collect it from Railway street the parking area behind the Dayboro post-office, it is a one-way street and plenty of room for vendors to park. When I was there last Saturday, I noticed that it worked better than a McDonald’s drive-through 😉
Because everything is pre-sold there is no standing around, the folks of Dayboro just drive past. The vendor hands your purchase to you through the window, it is all over and done with within an hour. (The Dayboro REKO is operating from 11-12 on a Saturday).
Local producers should be excited.
I am very excited about this REKO, I have seen initiatives like this come and go, and perhaps this one goes eventually as well. For now, it is here, and I am going to use it.
Several years I have been plotting different ideas, how to use my land, how to make a few bucks on the side. The biggest issue I have, is the traffic to my place. I’m not too fond of crowds, not a great fan of folks coming to my home. I trialed it will hay sales in Dayboro (Yes that’s me) and having people driving up to the house and asking for hay is encroaching too much on my privacy. Hence I did online purchase and delivery only. It is the delivery side of things that “kills your business”. Sure it is only short distances yet it takes a surprisingly lot of time.
REKO solved 99% of all of that the issues I have. I can show my products online, using Facebook and a simple online webpage, and on Saturday, I pop into town to hand it over to the customers. The good thing is that I now can focus on growing stuff. On Friday’s I only harvest what is needed. This keeps waste to a minimum, the principle on which REKO is build.
With the way the climate is going, we will see a decline in grow-degree days. Colder temperatures mean that food will be harder to grow. It is one of the reasons why I believe the decentralisation of food production is KEY. For this to happen, we need local growers for that reason alone the REKO is a good place to start.
The REKO movement, born out of the CoVid-19 pandemic is one of the good things that came from it. Bringing back production to Australia might be another, having farms around the towns they support… well that might be a eutopia.
For now, all I can say is that the REKO model is a good step forward, it will not replace the Dayboro Markets if any it will compliment the markets and attract more patrons to the markets. So a win-win for all.
I genuinely hope that the momentum of the REKO movement keeps going. I will do my best to support it (no I did not start it that credit goes to others, as you see on the Facebook page), and I hope it will not follow the same path as all the other initiatives.
So what are you waiting for…… HAVE YOU REKO’ed YET?