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A new way of doing things: the rise of the sharing economy

8th August 2013


‘If you want to walk fast, walk alone. If you want to walk far, walk together’ – African Proverb

Ok, it might be a little cheesy, but this sentiment is the driving force behind the emergence of a wave of start-ups that are profoundly changing the way we travel, work, consume, play, shop, mobilise and socialise.  

New technologies connect us to information, to other people, wider communities and physical things in real time, and in ever more efficient ways. In a world where there is colossal amount of consumption of private resources for personal benefit, the concept of sharing goods and assets is really gaining momentum.

Sharing economy start-ups like AirbnbBla Bla Car and GoCarShare help users benefit from sharing underutilised assets like spare rooms and passenger seats in a car journey. We’re building an online food marketplace within this new economy to make it easier for people and communities to come together to access locally sourced food. And we’re in good company. A number of UK based peer-to-peer food start-ups are doing some pretty special things like the food swapping initiative Apples for Eggs and Casserole, who help people share extra portions of food that they have cooked to other people in their local area.

But it’s not just physical assets that can be shared, swapped or bartered for – less tangible resources like time and space can also be exchanged…

In the very, very early days of FarmDrop, we pitched up at a co-working space and startup lab called the Hub Westminster where we found ourselves suddenly immersed in a vibrant community of socially minded startups and projects all looking to share ideas, inspiration and collaborate. We even met some of our future team members from conversations about FarmDrop over washing up coffee cups!

We’re always keen to meet other sharing economy startups, so we were really excited to meet with the guys at GoodPeople. GoodPeople are creating a new way for social entrepreneurs and like-minded people to open up and harness relevant knowledge and resources over the Internet. FarmDrop’s George went along to a meet-up with the good people at GoodPeople and a handful of other inspiring start-up social entrepreneurs. They shared ideas, resources, contacts, and connections together and it was a perfect opportunity to see how the collaborative economy works in its simplest form.

GoodPeople are aiming to launch a collaborative/sharing based social website (in development now) which will help cater for this fast growing economy. It’s a really interesting concept and if you like the sound of what they’re up to head over to for more info.

For more info on the sharing economy be sure to check out this article by the Guardian


“Where’d my food come from?” – Short supply chain or ‘local’?

31st July 2013

What do we mean by local food? Given the different interests of those using the term, “local” means many different things to many different people.

Many of us think that locally produced food equals “local food”. Although this is part of it, perhaps another way to think of it is the number of individual links between the producer and consumer. So a carrot grown in a farm local to the shop or market that the carrot was bought in would be considered “local”, just as one bought directly from a farmer based the other side of the country.

Following horsemeat gate, short, more transparent supply chains seem to be high on many of our agendas. We highly recommend reading Moya Kneafsey’s recent article in the Guardian. FarmDrop’s driving force is to reconnect farmers with their communities so we were so excited to read that she sees “the revolution in food chains” being driven by innovative farmers diversifying into direct sales (yes!) and community groups looking to take control of where their food comes from (double yes!). 

Buying direct is the easiest way to shorten the supply chain, but despite the obvious benefits it’s often a real struggle for producers as the task and cost of marketing is placed firmly upon their shoulders.

So having spoken to lots of farmers and producers about these challenges, we’re proposing quite a radical solution. By coming together as a community to buy food direct from producers, you’ll be getting a better price, supporting your local farmers and you’ll know exactly where and who your food’s come from.

It will also mean some of the freshest produce in town as it’s all pulled, picked, caught and baked to order and lastly, as you come together to buy with your friends and neighbours it’s a way for food shopping to (finally) become fun! 


Like the sound of what we’re doing and want to know more? Join our mailing list to find out more here.


17th July 2013

The return of the Goosegog

Having fallen out of fashion in recent years, this once loved summer fruit is coming back into its own and can be found in abundance in local farmers markets.

Ok, so you’ve picked up punnet of these plump and bristly little fellows, but now what? For some seasonal inspiration, head over to and treat yourself to the quintessential taste of British summer.


12th July 2013

FarmDrop meets…..

Now we knew word was getting out, but we didn’t realise *quite* how far it had got.

These students came all the way from SungKyun Kwan University (in Seoul, in Korea, in Asia, basically the other side of the world) to interview FarmDrop as a global #localfood mentor! It was great to share our story with them and to learn about the development of the local food market in Korea.

All in all, a bit of a crazy but super fun morning chatting all things local with this lovely bunch. 

Thanks so much for visiting guys and we really hope you have an awesome time in London!


10th July 2013

Looks like we’re not the only ones trying to beat the heat…

Looking good at the Great Yorkshire Show, one of England’s biggest agricultural events is hot work, so it’s high time for a well deserved fan break.

Check out other ways these prized animals are keeping their cool here.

Have you seen any clever ways to cool down our hairy/furry/feathered friends? Drop us a line at [email protected]


Extreme foods from around the world

9th July 2013

From blended frogs to fried spiders, roasted cat to eggs cooked in urine, what is celebrated as a local delicacy in one part of the world can often elicit a more squeamish, grimace-like response (often accompanied with an emphatic ‘yuk’) in others.

But as the debate on the future of food continues, ideas and perceptions about what’s acceptable to eat are changing and we may see our diets change dramatically over the next few decades.

Bugs. That’s right, not only are creepy crawlies are currently infesting the UK’s restaurant scene, the UN have told us to think seriously about eating insects in the fight against global hunger. 

To the majority of us Brits chomping on beasties is about as palatable as slurping on a drink made from blended frog, but approximately 2 billion people already supplement their diets with insects. So it’s not beyond the realms of possibility that these crawly critters could become part of our diet within our lifetimes.

So it’s in this spirit that we’re bringing you a compilation of some of the most extreme food from around the world.

Quick warning – although really fascinating, it’s probs best not to read this on your lunch break.

Read more here: