Oftentimes, when people order a product online, it is easier to get it from a global marketplace such as Amazon or Ebay. However, especially with the current pandemic, it is important to support your local businesses as well.
What does it mean to buy locally?
With “buying locally”, I mean a scenario where, instead of buying from a global marketplace or international conglomerate, a shopper buys their product or service from a business that is either completely locally sourced or locally situated. For instance, instead of buying at Lidl, opt for a local, small-scale grocery store.
Why buy locally?
Instead of ordering, let's say, your dish soap at the internationally owned supermarket, think of buying from a local supplier. Not only do you directly support the local economy and community by buying locally, it is also a great opportunity to save on shipping costs and international taxes. However, arguably the most important reason for local purchase is SUSTAINABILITY. Buying locally is more sustainable!
Besides the economic sustainability in your local community, buying locally is also an excellent way to contribute to reduction of global shipping. A paper published by MIT researchers found that the ‘impatient shoppers’, or the people who more often than not opt for fast shipping, increase their carbon footprint threefold over that of local shoppers.
Also, the material usage for packaging is significantly less damaging for the environment, which is an added advantage. This is often the case because it does not need to be shipped in bulk packaging across the world, but can instead be transported locally, or not even at all!
Now, we will try to outline and showcase some of the locally sourced or located stores, products, and services that might be a good alternative to the globally sourced items. Note that this list will of course not include all of the local alternatives, but is instead a highlight of some particular alternatives!
As one of the brands that 180 Degrees Consulting Lund works with currently, we can not help but recommend this as an excellent alternative to your usual cleaning supplies. Where Skosh differs from others is that it is not only a Lund-based startup, straight out of the Lund University Venture Hub, it is also a very sustainable solution to one of the biggest problems of current cleaning supplies. Where regular cleaning supplies that you would normally buy at a grocery store are 97% water, Skosh gives you spray bottles and tablets. By cutting down on this incredible amount of water weight, the carbon footprint of the transport and shipping is cut down drastically. The products are currently available on www.Skosh.se.
Africa Daily Market
Tucked away in the centre of Lund, right by Botulfsplatsen, Africa Daily Market is an excellent place to do some shopping for African food or spices, or to get an amazing meal. The products in the store are very affordable, and the staff is incredibly friendly, willing to help you with any need or question you may have. Besides this, another highlight is the incredible food that is sold there. The owner will passionately tell you about all her dishes, while serving you a luxurious amount of deliciously prepared African food. Whenever you need some incredible food and a comfortable atmosphere, do not hesitate to check it out!
Broder Jakobs Stenungsbageri
Another gem in the centre of Lund; Broder Jakobs offers delicious, locally-sourced coffee and various goods and pastries that are prepared and baked in-house. With arguably some of the best kanelbullar and kardemummabullar in the city, you should definitely try most of their menu items. The staff is incredibly friendly and the atmosphere in the café is similar to that of a big family living room. This may be because it is a family-owned business, but seeing the staff together and with their customers makes you feel truly at home. If you want to further support their business, they also offer various merchandise for their café.
I hope you enjoy some of the local alternatives, and truly wish for everyone to support their local business in these tough times. However, do remember that in the current pandemic, do what you can to minimize risks!!
Master’s student in International Marketing and Brand Management at Lund University. The author holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Amsterdam. Pim is a Marketing Director at 180 Degrees Consulting, Lund.