A Belgian Supermarket Works for No Profit, and Here’s Why We Need Them Everywhere

4 years ago

An unusual supermarket has appeared in Brussels recently. It is a cooperative shop whose members are neighbors living in the same area. They themselves decide what products to buy and then sell them with a minimum mark-up. It’s also these same people who take turns working as cashiers, packers, and deliverers.

Bright Side was inspired by this idea and invites you to learn about this principle of business.

The shop is called BEES Coop. It was created to prove that people can choose the products and goods they want to consume by themselves without paying extra money for it. Its founders created a new model of trading and leading business where any participant can become an owner, a seller, and a buyer.

They called this model the “cooperative and participative” model.

Any person who subscribes to this market becomes a co-operator who will take part in making common decisions, maintenance, and solving other important tasks.

Moreover, any person who becomes a co-operator commits themselves to 3 hours or more of work in this store weekly. This model helps to reduce the costs for labor and, therefore, keeps the price of goods at a low level.

Co-operators choose any convenient time for them to help the supermarket stay running. If today you came to the market as a client to grab some greenery, tomorrow you might become a cashier or the one who packs that greenery for other clients.

The main benefit that a person gets from this system is becoming a client of the supermarket. It is open only to co-operators and provides high-quality products at a low price.

BEES Coop. doesn’t get any profit for its work and is mainly aimed at providing high quality and cost-effectiveness.

The members of the cooperative choose the suppliers of goods themselves according to their personal criteria. Therefore, the main focus is on quality and not profit, unlike conventional supermarkets.

BEES Coop. is going to open several more branches in other areas of the city soon to continue implementing this new idea of life.

Do you think this type of business has a bright future? Would you want to become a co-operator of this kind of shop? Please share your opinion with us in the comments!

Illustrated by Leisan Gabidullina for Bright Side


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