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Greek Food Corridors:

Greece: New electronic auction allows growers to leave out the middle man

After analysing the problems currently faced in the Greek agricultural community, the team from Greek Food Corridors started working together with Aucxis Belgium and Greek market professionals, to create an export focused, automated market with European standards, beneficial for all market stakeholders. The result was a next generation electronic auction infrastructure for Greek fruit & vegetables, synchronized with a Commodity Exchange market for Futures contracts based on Fiat and crypto-currency; called Greek Food Corridors.

"The design of the Greek Food Corridors concept is the setting up of a central auction system in Athens, called the “dealing room”, where various fruit and vegetable lots are sold remotely to the highest bidder, using a clock auction system. There is one central server system which communicates with all the regional depots involved in selling the products. In each depot, supplied products are registered with their product characteristics, the correct storage location and the date of receipt, stored in a central database. For example, we receive stock of a particular product, which can be sold afterwards to “registered buyers” through the various e-auction sales tools," CEO Dimitri Haritos explains.

The idea is that supply and demand is brought together. The buyer can check, in real time, the stock of all the members and growers in the nationwide market, and can ask who is able to deliver for a particular price to network members. Afterwards, all of the transaction information is available on the GFC organisation website, for buyers, growers, service providers, etc. After being logged in, the client can view his specific data (transactions, catalogues, statistics, and general information). After the sale, the various depots get the necessary tasks and insights about who is going to load what. The back office software makes the necessary finalisation of the transactions, follow-up of invoices, payments and statistical reports.

"Despite the unfavourable economic environment, there is added value in Greek produce. However, there is a strong need for innovation & collaboration in the Agriculture sector in Greece. Greek producers are small in economic strength, numerous and uncoordinated, and are unable to define the prices of agricultural products. They are not price-makers but price recipients in the hands of a small number of businesses at a monopoly level who are pricing according to their interests. Thus, the prices paid by consumers are often 4-6 times higher than the prices received by the producers," continued Haritos.

"For many years, the Greek Primary sector lacked competitiveness, due to high production costs and weaknesses in the standardisation, handling and marketing of agricultural products. Structural interventions are needed in production and promotion technology level, increasing standardization, and changing the way collectives and groups of growers (GP) are operating in order to cover 50% of the agricultural production, instead of only one fifth today."

Haritos said that one of the advantages to the new infrastructure, especially for small and medium-sized farmer’s cooperatives and producers, is the fact that they will be able to negotiate directly with buyers, both at a national and international level, under the same conditions as larger companies. The new platform will facilitate the task of finding buyers or sellers to negotiate simultaneously and in real time on the trading screen. The members will be able to benefit from economies of scale as well as marketing and from direct access to International markets.

Click here for the white paper report, providing more detailed information on the e-auction infrastructure, block chain and the use of cryptocurrency.

For more information:
Dimitri Haritos
Greek Food Corridors
Tel: +30 210 6718745
Fax: +30 210 6718743 

Publication date: 5/4/2018
Author: Heather Wicks



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