Delhaize is a supermarket in Belgium with the shortest supply chain ever. It is growing food on the rooftop of the supermarket and selling it. The only supply is to bring the food from roof to floors below.
The food is freshly grown and is available within a few hours after being harvested. The food is grown using fully organic ways without any synthetic fertilizers and pesticides.
The plantation system has a high sustainability quotient as the energy utilized by the greenhouse is produced through solar panels and capturing heat produced by the supermarket.
The water used in the roof farming is the recycled water of the building. Strawberries, lettuces, and tomatoes can be grown all year. In cold weather, the greenhouse provides the sufficient heat to the plants.
Delhaize supermarket is promoting urban farming. As consumers are shifting more and more towards organic food, they are concerned where the food is coming from and if it’s healthy or not.
Although weight is a big constraint on the 360-square-metre roof and not all of the food sold in the supermarket can be grown on the rooftop, it is still a good practice.
The supermarket reduces the cost of supply. The supply chain has a heavy carbon footprint. The food is generally grown on the countryside far from the cities and is exported through heavy vehicles on a daily basis. The food often gets damaged and loses its freshness on the way.
Locally grown food is the best way to reduce the impact on the environment as well as human health.
It also supports the importance of growing your own food. When it comes to food, the first thing that comes to mind, after the food itself, is the expenditure. But that would not be the case if we can grow food with basic gardening and agriculture skills. Delhaize supermarket is a fine example bringing urban farming into the spotlight.