Using digital plattaforms, MUCHO has been able sell to families and restaurants in Bogotá organic or native agricultural and fishing products, characterized by its sustainable production, guaranteeing the highest profit to its producers.
Hernando Ramirez Arango
Universidad Externado de Colombia
Gustavo A Yepes López
MUCHO's innovation lies in its business model, which is characterized by three aspects:
- The commercialization of organic or native agricultural and fishing products, characterized by its sustainable production, to users of its digital platforms and restaurants in Bogota.
- Direct buyers to producers, which means eliminating intermediaries in the supply chain. This translates to a positive impact to their productive activities and their lives with a higher profit at each sale.
- The use of digital platforms (app and social networks) to sell the products to the final customer in a novel way, telling the story of the producer, the product and the region where it comes from. This connects the final buyer through intangible values that go beyond the products and their price.
According to Carmen Posada Monroy, Director of Sustainability of MUCHO COLOMBIA, "The way we feed ourselves can conserve our health, reduce our environmental footprint and mitigate social inequality. But in Colombia, the disconnection between cities and the countryside and the lack of information about food, doesn’t allow to think about local consumption as a tool for social change."
Through MUCHO COLOMBIA, an ethical consumption platform, producers from different regions of the country can sell their sustainable and environmentally responsible products. With these products, it is guaranteed that people in the cities will have healthy and delicious food on their tables.
Juliana Zarate is a Colombian who studied in London and created MUCHO UK, an application that sells personalized recipes based on consumer behavior. Juliana met Carmen in London, where she was studying a master's degree in sustainable business.
"We enjoyed cooking and we think in the idea of working with Colombian agricultural producers, and when Juliana returned to Colombia, we decided that it was the perfect time to establish MUCHO COLOMBIA," says Carmen.
Juliana and Carmen returned to Colombia in 2017, the year in which the country was experiencing a historic moment with the signing of the Peace Process. After this event, it has been possible to access places that were previously recognized as war zones, allowing the MUCHO team to access new products and discover the full potential of the regions.
This allowed Juliana and Carmen to create what is now MUCHO COLOMBIA: a virtual strategy through which Colombian consumers can enjoy different native products, harvested in an organic and responsible way, and with the certainty that most of the Profits will end up in the hands of Producer who did the dedicated work of producing the food.
MUCHO COLOMBIA helps these producers and their products to be known in the country. This was not possible before, as they have limitations in logistics, communication and the promotion of their work.
MUCHO is interested in the empowerment of farmers and fishermen ensuring the best possible quality of their products with the lowest environmental impact. MUCHO works on the strengthening of production processes through quality standards that allow them to sell the food in a sustainable and environmentally responsible manner.
Working with high quality standards has made producers understand that they should be empowered in their activities. They are being empowered to realize that they must be able to be as qualified as a city producer. This ends up in a mental change for them and brings an enormous social impact, by giving value to their work.
In addition to the above, the founders Carmen and Juliana say, "At the beginning we plan a different business model, but after we realized all the limitations of the producers related to logistics and the lack of communications and collaboration within the community, we decided to develop some tools that we believe are the minimum any producer must have in countryfield."
Finally, MUCHO COLOMBIA has found a way to deliver better and healthier food to the cities, impacting the well-being of people, and this is reflected in a better health for their customers.
MUCHO COLOMBIA chose to sell high quality products of the farmers and fishermen in Colombia. This meant an important project for the company, because the differents regions do not had the infrastructure to ensure an operative chain that is 100% safe and effective.
Securing a logistics chain that would bring products from the regions to Bogotá, the company's innovation attracted new investors such as Felipe Macías, Sustainability Director of the Crepes & Waffles (one of the 3 largest local restaurants in the country), who made a substantial investment in the project.
"Providing tools to the farmers to help them send the products weekly, in good conditions and with the established quality standards, has been one of the challenges that we have worked during all this time as a team".
Also, MUCHO COLOMBIA managed to have a team that generates 7 direct jobs. These people are responsible for contacting the suppliers, design the digital strategies, search new allies, increment the sales and handle other aspects that have allowed the company to be a profitable business, improving life quality in the suppliers from the different regions of the country.
The Colombian producers found in MUCHO an ally who helps them progress in their agriculture and fishing activities. The company is committed to offering better payments to its suppliers, assurance that they receive payments in short terms of about a week.
The company has had to focus efforts on developing logistics chains that allow closing the gap between the producing areas and Bogota, overcoming cultural and infrastructure difficulties.
MUCHO COLOMBIA visits the majority of producers who are closer to Bogotá, with the aim of becoming familiar with them, but above all, to ensure that the production processes contribute and protect the environment.
Carmen assured,"Perishable food is ordered at the time the customers need it, we only ask for what is necessary. The non-perishables are stored in the storeroom and sent to the consumer in each order. We try to use recyclable materials in our packaging, almost avoiding plastic, although we have not found yet a better solution for meat than vacuum packaging."
Concerning the producers who are located in the farthest areas of the country, MUCHO has found that these farmers are very committed to developing agro-ecological practices, like the development of their own biofertilizers, the recollection of local microorganisms from the forest, and planning their own land management processes.
Additionally, one of the key products in the company is the artisanal fishery. In this field, MUCHO has done research to know what are the best fishing gears for each region.
"MUCHO is a work in progress because it represent a huge challenge for us and for the farmers. We have some certified producers and we are working in developing quality processes that contribute to the environment, and help us achieve our company goal," said Carmen.
Carmen Posada Monroy, Director of Sustainability
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Bogotá, Distrito Capital, CO
Business Website: mucho.com.co
Year Founded: 2018
Number of Employees: 2 to 10
MUCHO COLOMBIA is the founder for a experiment characterized by its innovative, sustainable, environmental friendly business model, supported by technology. This Colombian enterprise is a platform that allows Colombian farmers to produce local-organic products, and get a higher profit compared to those who use ordinary distribution channels. This platform encourages social change through the rapprochement between consumers in the cities and the farmers of the countryside.
MUCHO COLOMBIA is the ally of several producers in Colombia. They help them sell their products through their virtual platforms by "telling" the story of the products, the farmers and the regions where the product comes from.