When brands change hands

Unilever’s 2017 buy-out of Pukka Herbs raised the issue of popular organic brands becoming acquisition targets for multinational companies – in this case a huge corporation whose products range from processed foods to detergents, with brands including PG Tips and Domestos, and operations which include palm oil and tea plantations.

This post discusses how widespread this phenomenon has become and explains the advantage that bulk buying clubs have in responding to such shifts.

Continue reading “When brands change hands”

Buying clubs on Brexit watch

Many people across the island of Ireland are keeping a close eye on Brexit developments – and bulk buying club members are no exception.

Several groups based in the Republic currently source their deliveries from British wholefood cooperatives, importing without the slightest issue due to the two countries’ shared EU membership. However, in just five months, these small-scale arrangements could become untenable under a potential ‘No Deal Brexit’ bringing the return of tariffs and a range of import procedures. Continue reading “Buying clubs on Brexit watch”

The problem with health food shops

I’m always glad that there are small, independent shops that sell wholefoods. The best of them steer clear of the temptation to pack their shelves with high-profit vitamins and supplements, with owners genuinely believing that good wholesome food is the best medicine.

But there’s a problem, still – one that the bulk buying club approach can fix. Continue reading “The problem with health food shops”

Permanently pop-up

Most people will be familiar with ‘pop-up shops’ offered on short term lets.  Dubliners may also remember Granby Park, a short-lived ‘pop-up’ public space on derelict land that was supported then taken away by the local authority, only for the site to return to disuse.

But if pop-up shops and pop-up parks come and go that’s because they express a passive, top-down idea of allocating space for temporary use until it can find a ‘higher’ (i.e. more profitable) purpose.

However, doing a pop-up activity is quite amenable to running on a permanent basis – or at least as long as those making it happen want to keep it going. Continue reading “Permanently pop-up”