The Food Assembly provides people with high-quality local food that is sourced and produced with care.
We ensure that producers work using sustainable practices, that each farm is visited. We get to know each Food Assembly Host, and we create a network that is dynamic and works in harmony.
Producers, Hosts and The Food Assembly work together in full transparency, with mutual trust and professionalism to bring you the best local food.
The Food Assembly, Hosts, and Producers agree to the following:
- Organise regular Online Markets, selecting produce with care (quality, variety, price, distance, availability of staple items, transparency of source), whilst avoiding any conflicts of interest between Producers.
- Organise the local pick-up market at a spacious and pleasant venue. Coordinate Assembly Collections: prepare, host and clear-up after the weekly Collection. This takes approximately 3 hours.
Work to build the local Food Assembly to a financially sustainable level so that the key Producers have a worthwhile outlet.
Work with Producers to understand their produce and how it is made: visiting the workplace of each Producer within a year of working with them.
Coordinate Assembly activities online using platform tools such as The Food Assembly website, messaging and social media.
Combine this with using offline tools, for example: giving out promotional materials, and organising activities outside of the Collection time such as farm visits and meeting with local groups.
- Be open and supportive with other Hosts in the region; giving a positive welcome to new Assemblies and planning collaboration where possible.
Pass on information to Producers and Members about important decisions while upholding the following prior notice requirements:
- one month's notice for a cancelled Collection
- two months’ notice for ending collaboration with a Producer who does not uphold their commitments
- three months’ notice for closure of an Assembly. Also, actively search for a replacement Host(s) from their local community if they are terminating their role as Host.
- Act as a communication bridge between Members and Producers by explaining the expectations and concerns to each other, putting them in direct contact where appropriate.
- Only retain personal data of Members and Producers for matters related to The Food Assembly, and respect wishes expressed by these parties about when and how to be contacted.
- Do not pressurise Producers to deliver if they fail to meet their minimum orders.
- Maintain regular contact with The Food Assembly, keeping the team updated on any changes relative to Assembly activity. (Venue, Host name, time, etc. )
- Offer local produce from a maximum radius of 150 miles from the Assembly venue, supplied directly from their own farm or workshop which is registered on the platform.
- Ensure product transparency by giving clear information about the products offered; ingredients, characteristics, and simple recipe suggestions in the product descriptions.
- If offering a product that is not grown or produced by themselves, the original producer has to be declared in the product description and must be registered on the platform.
- Ensure the delivery of products if minimum orders are met and offer support to any new Assemblies being launched, for example, by setting easily attainable minimum orders during the first 3-6 months of trading.
- Ensure that each Member receives precisely the order made through the website.
- Deliver and distribute products in accordance with health rules that apply, particularly in terms of temperature, labelling and packaging.
- Take the necessary precautions on the day of collection to ensure that the most punctual Members can collect their orders without having to wait, and in the best possible conditions.
Ensure accurate labelling and delivery of products. Be at the Food Assembly or have a workforce representative present during the collection every time minimum orders are met and at least once a month otherwise.
If unable to attend yourself, ensure the representatives know the products. Always operate within the framework of direct selling where all the sales occur online.
Foster a spirit of mutual support and harmony between Food Assembly Producers.
Participate in the coordination of the Assembly by improving communications between Members and Hosts, through Assembly activities (for example, farm visits, tastings during Collections, etc).
- Give the Assembly Host two months' notice if they intend to cease supplying.
- Select Assembly projects on the basis of their professionalism and their chances of success, and then train and advise Hosts throughout their activity.
- Offer guidance to Producers for using the platform and communicating with the Network.
- Always protect the freedom of Producers to determine fair prices in accordance with the principles of direct selling and the production costs of the Producer.
- Coordinate and organise the network of Assemblies, maintaining its vitality, professionalism and sense of unity.
- Only allow Producers in the Network who use sustainable agriculture techniques, pay fair wages, and are striving for ecological and qualitative excellence.
- Raise awareness in the Network and amongst the public at large about issues in the farming sector and wider food system.
Monitor actual payments to Producers and Hosts, as well as refunds to Members, taking responsibility for any technical issues that may arise in the online transactions system.
Never increase service charges (16.7% of a Producer’s turnover, excluding taxes).
- Channel feedback from users and the public into the regular development of new services aiming to improve the economic, environmental and social impact of the model. Ensure clear communication about such new services to the Network.
- If/when a Food Assembly Host(s) ceases his or her activity, support them to find a replacement Host(s) or encourage the creation of a new Assembly nearby.
- Maintain an open and objective position during any disputes that may arise between Members, Hosts or Producers.