Farmer Markus Bernhardsgrütter grows 75 different vegetables on his farm in the Mädertal in Gossau (Eastern Switzerland). Taken directly from the field, he delivers his products in 'seasonal boxes' to his customers.
The team from Hof Mädertal. On the right is Markus Bernhardsgrütter, owner and founder of online platform 'Season Box'.
Bernhardsgrütter is not alone in this concept of selling vegetables directly from the farm to consumers through subscriptions. In recent years, similar businesses have popped up everywhere. Bernhardsgrütter heard of the idea for the first time about ten years ago, when he was training as an agricultural engineer. "For my thesis, I developed a strategy for direct marketing via the Internet." This was close to his heart: "Because even my parents sold their vegetables at the Gossau weekly market itself." Bernhardsgrütter himself also mainly sells his vegetables on the market. But now there is on-line trade as well. In 2012 he teamed up with Matthias Ruoss. They founded their own company.
Short routes, personal contact
Gossauer now offers its online platform to other agricultural businesses throughout Switzerland. "From Murten via Zug to Schaffhausen, enterprising farmers are partaking everywhere. Season Box encompasses the whole administrative process, from ordering to the sale itself." The farmers have one thing in common: "We are all young, motivated entrepreneurs." It is their innovative spirit that unites these growers.