Rede Ecológica is a network of consumers and producers.
Producers are chosen to supply the consumers based on criteria which includes farming practice, equality and supply chains.
Consumers that participate in the network, apart from purchasing quality food at reasonable prices, contribute with their time and dedication to make the network function.
Dedication can include accompanying suppliers in order to assist with purchase and supply, as well as increasing development of practices that are less damaging to the environment.
The network is also present to participate in policy making decisions by Public Administration, lending support to small, family run, agroecology farms.
More recently, on account of the pandemic, a campaign is in progress whereby, from donations received, real food is purchased from the suppliers and distributed to those in need. This has allowed for the survival of suppliers as well as an introduction to a healthier diet to those that are receiving the assistance.
This is the result of years of acquaintance with the suppliers, as well as access to the communities that are in need.
Only known producers can be trusted to supply produce that has been farmed in a sustainable manner.
This is what differentiates the Rede Ecológica.
Interaction between Producers and Consumers
The products purchased by Rede Ecológica come from small agro-ecological and / or organic producers. Agroecological products and producers do not always fit perfectly into the complex Brazilian legislation on organic products. On the other hand, agroecology goes far beyond the prerequisite of not using pesticides and other chemical substances: it also involves polyculture, fair trade, solidary economy, respect between genders and other aspects.
We believe that small agroecological producers are the greatest ecologists of our planet, insofar as they care for it, as well as they care for our health and keep the field and food within a sustainable proposition.
One of the great objectives of the Network is, therefore, to support and encourage these small producers, enabling the flow of their production and seeking a closer interaction between countryside and city. Today we work with around 30 producer groups, with fresh products delivered weekly and dry products monthly.
In this manner, collective purchases, in addition to meeting the basic consumer needs of members, contribute to the income of hundreds of families of farmers who produce without harming the environment and who often have difficulties in marketing their products.
Commissions for monitoring producers, which include consumers who are systematically involved, are one of the most important actions of Rede Ecológica.
This is related to the definition of criteria for choosing producers, the initial contacts to approve their entry, and the constant interaction with them, especially at times when problems arise, but also being concerned with various issues amongst which: efforts so that our fresh producers join the Network to buy dry products, such as rice, beans, flour, etc; also the subject of the full use of packaging, encouraging its reuse. Critical moments for producers are also monitored as much as possible, always in search of being able to offer support.
The two commissions that accompany producers of fresh and dry products, each have a coordination, since there are many producers.
In choosing producers, we give priority to solidarity economy groups, organized collectively and that are geographically closer, and we seek to establish stable partnerships with them. We give priority to settlements, cooperatives / associations, micro-companies and individual producers, in that order.