"B2B distribution model supporting local food sector in Baltic Sea region rural areas"

This project started 1 October 2017 and it will last for three years with the support from Interreg Baltic Sea Region with a total budget of 2,436,479 €. Regional Culinary Heritage Europe (SÖSK, Ystad Municipality) acts as project partner with a budget of 252,525 €. The lead partner is Ministry of Rural Affairs of the Republic of Estonia. In total there are 14 partners in the project coming from all 10 countries around the Baltic Sea - Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, Russia & Sweden.  

The aim of the project: Local food producers and farmers in BSR rural areas are mainly small family businesses,who prefer to organize the sales through face-to-face contact and by phone. They're often not able to sell their products to big wholesale companies or supermarket chains because of limited production volumes and higher price comparing with large producers. Therefore their access to catering, food processing and retail sector is complicated. The market area of local food producers is usually their own home region. In many regions they have established local food networks to cooperate for marketing and information exchange.

The initial analysis of current situation in BSR countries shows that existing local food distribution models are mainly focused on Business to Consumers (B2C) relations and there is lack of economically competitive Business to Business (B2B) model. Local food nets in BSR region have highlighted the need for cost-efficient distribution solutions for delivering food products from farms to local restaurants/tourism farms/shops/industries. The objective of current project is to design a sustainable and transferable business model for B2B distribution applicable for local food nets established by local food producers and providers in BSR rural areas. 

The model enables to establish smooth short supply chains in local and regional level offering opportunities for growth and improved business performance to SME's acting in local food sector in rural areas. The business model is designed using the best available competences and current experiences of local food nets in implementation of B2C and B2B solutions.

The B2B distribution model is tested in 12 pilot regions in BSR area in cooperation with local food networks and organizations (SME's/cooperatives/NGO's/farmers unions etc) responsible for organizing delivery and logistics of local food. As the level of technological innovation in local food sector is rather weak, then local food nets and distribution organizations in project area are encouraged to take advantage of existing e-platforms facilitating B2B distribution in local food sector. 

Partners will promote and highlight new business opportunities provided by B2B distribution model to all local food networks in project area. Partners introduce them in detail the content and benefits of the model, and also real experiences received from piloting. The main expected result is improved capacity of national and regional organizations from 10 countries to support local food networks from BSR area interested in launching B2B distribution of local food products in business model and process innovation.

Project Partners Baltic Sea Food

PP1 Ministry of Rural Affairs of the Republic of Estonia EE

PP2 Latvian country tourism association LV

PP3 Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Tourist Board DE

PP4 Ystad Municipality (Culinary Heritage Europe) SE

PP5 Latvian Agricultural Organization Cooperation LV

PP6 Business Region Esbjerg DK

PP7 HANEN - Norwegian Rural Tourism and Local Food association NO

PP8 NGO Estonian Rural Tourism EE

PP9 The Estonian Chamber of Agriculture and Commerce EE

PP10 Pskov Agrotechnical College RU

PP11 State Committee of the Pskovregion for economic development and investment policy RU

PP12 Lahti University of Applied Sciences ltd. FI

PP13 Lithuanian countryside tourism association LT

PP14 "Polish Nature" Foundation PL