Building short food chains; bringing the potato back into our hearts and minds with Piepr

The Covid-19 crisis has proven fertile ground for local consumption and shorter food chains. But short chains offer much more than a temporary solution for changing consumption patterns during this crisis. It is key to make these chains stick and perpetuate the transition towards more local supply.

In the NRC Handelsblad of June 16th 2020, Barbara Baarsma, Drees Peter van den Bosch, Joris Lohman en Samuel Levie argued that now is the moment to push through. And we agree that it is key to leverage momentum and make a lasting impact. But how?

Coalition for impact

For the past six months a coalition of stakeholders; LTO Noord, Rabobank Amsterdam, Schiphol and Amped, and creatives; Fronteer, Giantleaps and Mister Kitchen have explored the question: how to promote and perpetuate short chains?

Through thorough data analysis and creative co-creation workshops, we arrived at two key insights:

  • Dutch consumers have a greatly reduced awareness of the origin and production of food. Seasonality, climate impact and growth processes are things that most consumers in the Netherlands know little about. This also means they are not able to make conscious decisions about eating local, in-season or sustainable. In fact; we see a growing gap between farmers, producers and (urban) consumers.
  • We also discovered that the Dutch potato chain is already very sustainable and relatively short. 90% of potatoes consumed in the Netherlands are ‘home-grown’. And compared to substitute staples like rice, pasta or quinoa, its climate impact is low.

However, the potato has lost its mojo. It is considered somewhat boring and is associated with traditional Dutch cuisine like ‘stamppot’. To turn this around, we developed Piepr.

Piepr.org website

The Piepr Revolution

The platform Piepr.org introduces new potato inspired dishes and products that place the spotlight over unique Dutch potato crops. Our mission is to reintroduce potatoes directly from farmer to consumer. With personal stories of farmers and cultural and culinary connections, we stimulate awareness around short chains. And; shorter chains help to deliver a better margin for farmers.

“We live in a food paradise; there is an abundance of fresh food in the Netherlands, including potatoes. All we have to do is wanting to see it and accelerating sustainable change by making conscious food choices. Short chains help with this. And the Piepr products make it very tasty!”

— Barbara Baarsma, Rabobank

“It is good that the short chain is now receiving more attention, because many consumers know little about how food is grown. In the Netherlands, we are ahead in the field of innovation, including in potato cultivation. I am happy that we can now literally present the results to you.”

— Corné Kodde – Polder Potato

Making lasting impact

On June 16th the piepr.org platform went live. We started a pilot and delivered food concepts to 60 households for validation. Currently, we are evaluating the outcomes and designing the steps to bring Piepr to all households and make a lasting impact.

Curious to learn more or want to contribute to this initiative? Go to Piepr.org or send us a message below.

Talk to us

We are happy to tell you more

Martijn Pater

Founder

Babke Hogenhuis

Senior Strategist

Tessa Werter

Tessa Werter

Strategist

Alexandra Asperslag

Connector