The Gbiota movement
Colin Austin 17 Mar 2020 © Creative commons this document may be reproduced but the source should be acknowledged.
I want my grandchildren to live in a society where everyone, regardless of their financial state, have access to food which will make them healthy. It is simply not a good society where a small number of people have inordinate wealth while other people cannot afford to eat properly.
But is it is not just a question of money. I write many article on nutrient deficiency in our diet, for example the importance of zinc to our immune system (and our sexual function). What to affluent people do? Race of to buy zinc supplements which is ridiculous. In the blue zone where people live, not just live but are healthy and active into their nineties or even hundred. No expensive pill – just healthy food.
We have two aims –
To enable people to buy genuinely healthy food at a reasonable price particularly focusing on improving gut health
To help people and existing organisations set up profitable businesses supplying genuinely healthy food in an honest system which improves people health within an alternative food system. (see finance section at end).
Why we need an alternative food system
In the last fifty years we have seen a dramatic change in our food system, which on one hand has provided cheap and readily available food from across the world and on the other has resulted in a major health epidemic of diabetes, obesity, dementia and related diseases.
We know that gut health is critical, it acts as an intelligent control system regulating our appetite and how much and where we store fat as well as being an important part of our immune system.
There is extensive documentation from respected scientist, one of the most readable is Brain Food by Dr Lisa Mosconi.
Not just technology
At one time I was naive enough to think the problem was purely technical. I developed the Gbiota bed as a highly efficient way of growing food which would enhance our gut biology.
Result – minimal impact.
Not just communications
There are many people who understand the importance of gut health and want to buy food that will enhance their gut.
There are many regenerative farmers who are improving their soil by increasing the organic and mineral content and enhancing the soil biology which is vital for improving gut health.
Health may start in the soil but it lands in the gut.
So it would seem that all that is needed is to link together the people who want to improve their gut health with these growers. So I developed the www.pickandeat.shop web site where people could buy directly from regenerative growers.
Result – minimal impact.
We need a totally new system
I analysed why. I needed to change the system creating an alternative food system where people could not only grow and buy food but people could earn a respectable income by running ethical and viable businesses.
Read on to see how to have an industry where people can benefit from healthy food by running ethical and viable businesses.
I have recommended one book, here is another Feeding you lies by Vani Hari where she exposes the manipulation of our minds that leads to us eating sugary fatty food so we end up as blind cripples from diabetes or dribbling away in our wheel chairs and dying young from dementia. She tells it far better than I ever could so let me move on and explain the Gbiota food system.
Then and now
But before I get to the details let me just highlight some of the differences that have occurred over time in our views on how society should work.
Our modern view stem from what is known as the Chicago School of economics which started in the middle of last century. Their concept is that the sole responsibility of the directors of a company is to maximise profit for the share holders. They argue that the market place will automatically adjust to provide the most efficient system.
Fine in theory but what happens in the real world is that the way to optimise profits is to create monopoly power. To avoid legalities this may not be technically monopoly but in practise is a neo-monopoly, then buy cheap and sell dear.
This is exactly the way our modern food system works – food is grown in the cheapest possible way which means chemical industrial agriculture and sold dear which means loaded with sugars and fats, then make it as convenient as possible so it commands a high shelf price.
Now contrast this with the system that was in force when I was a kid, what you can see in any traditional village and particularly in the blue zones, where people live a healthy life into seriously old age.
The underlying idea of this old and now reborn system is there is a three way split in responsibilities between profits, employees and society (or customers).
These traditional societies would have consumers, farmers, cafes and shop and services like doctors and cooks.
They would not be formally organised but would work together in a cooperative way – one of the great features of the human species.
This is the basic of the Gbiota system.
The Gbiota food system
The Gbiota food system works in pretty much the same way that a traditional village works except that because there may be more peopled involved over much larger distances the system is modernised using the power of the internet.
It could be called modernised traditional agriculture. We call people involved members of the Gbiota club.
But it is not just the way the crops are grown it is the way that club members can communicate with each other.
They use the www.pickandeat.shop web site where every member has the option of creating their own web page to say to other members – this is what I want to buy or this is what I have to offer – like a bulletin board.
There are five basic categories in the Gbiota food system.
In a traditional village, people would chat among themselves so the growers would know exactly what people wanted to buy.
They would not have to choose between food grown using worn out soil using chemicals to force plants growth or biologically active nutrient rich soil. They had no choice there were no chemicals just manure and compost as fertilisers which automatically create a biologically active soil.
Do people in the modern food system have a choice? Look at these two cabbages.
One is grown in the modern chemical industrial system, with nutrient coming from chemical fertilisers and sprayed with chemicals to control pests. It may be lacking in the nutrients which are essential for human health but not needed (or only needed in limited amounts) by the plants.
There may be no beneficial biology and the chemicals to control bugs may harm the beneficial biology we have left.
The other is grown in nutrient rich biologically active soils.
It may be rich in the essential minerals, like the zinc I was talking about and it may be full of beneficial biology which will enhance gut health.
But how does anyone know just by looking at them? They can’t.
Most members will simply want to buy food grown in biologically active nutrient rich soil.
We call these biofoodies so they will need to register as a Biofoodie. We live in a world of fake news and manipulative promotion of fake foods so they want to be sure that they can trust their growers.
The biofoodies can go to the growers page and see exactly how the produce was grown and the results of any chemical or biological tests (soil or leaf tests).
The second group are regenerative farmers, they understand that the future of our food depends on having nutrient rich, biologically active soil to create a sustainable farming system. They simply need to register as a grower, but when they create their web page they need to showcase how they grow their food and to allow other members to create reviews of their growing practices.
On their web they display what produce they have, and particularly will have for sale.
While we are alive our bodies don’t go rotten, (unless we are diabetic).
We may be putting all sorts of biology into our mouths some of which could be harmful, but our beneficial bugs just deal with it without us thinking and our immune system, which is centered in our guts is on duty 24/7 looking for any unwanted invaders where they routinely deal with it without us even thinking about it.
Plants are not that different, they have their own system of chemicals and beneficial biology defending themselves from the bad bugs.
When the plant is harvested there is a transition from where the good biology is in charge to when the bad biology takes over (it goes rotten). The speed of take over varies with the plant types. Fruits, seeds and nuts typically have a protective skin so they may avoid going rotten for extensive periods of time.
An apple may avoid going rotten for weeks but cut the protective skin and it will start to turn brown (grow rotten) with hours.
The green vegetables which provide much of our beneficial biology have no protective skin so the process of switching from good to bad bugs starts immediatelyon harvesting.
In the Gbiota system the Biofoodie may buy the plants while they are still in the ground until ready to be collected by the boxer for deliver to the biofoodie within hours.
The third group are boxers, (basically transport and distribution system) which are an essential part of the Gbiota system. It is simply not enough that people can buy from a regenerative farmer, they must be able to buy at an economic price so all people can have access to healthy food regardless of income. We see access to healthy food at a reasonable price as a human right.
The boxers provide a service where they travel around the various growers and collect the produce from the growers, place in a biofoodies box and deliver to home or a food hub.
Apart from offering food that is really fresh the Gbiota system avoids a lot of waste. In the Gbiota system plants are generally only harvested after they have been purchased.
Apart from ensuring the produce is really fresh this avoids a lot of waste. In the conventional system plants are harvested on spec hoping that someone will buy them at full price, if not they are sold off cheap and discarded – a very wasteful system.
A member can belong to more than one category.
For example a boxer may know several growers who want to be part of the regenerative growers scene but may not want go to the effort of having their own page.
A boxer cab then take over their role and offer what to all purposes is an online green grocery store.
There are many crops which are highly localised and seasonal. Cherries are an obvious example. The boxer can post on his page and circulate to other members that they are planning a trip to the cheery growing region, receive orders in advance and collect cherries in bulk for distribution in his locality.
Food hubs are primarily cafes, restaurants where biofoodies can go to eat Gbiota food, markets, health food stores, or conventional green grocers or even some progressive independent Super Market or food stores.
Biofoodies would order on line and pick up from the food hub.
Cafes can play a crucial role. There is a major transition form the typical high fat and sugar diets to a high fruit and vegetable diet. Sugar can be very addictive while plain vegetables can be boring but they can be made very tasty (and even more nutritious) using herbs and spices to substitute for the high sugar.
Again members can belong to multiple categories so a cafe may also be a boxer and food hub.
People often find it difficult to make a change in diet from the typical high sugar and fat to a Gbiota diet. Support, either from professional advisers such as health clinics, diabetes educators, and just friends can help the transition.
I should point out that I am a support member as I offer advice and information on how to set up and operate Gbiota beds, which are a very efficient way of growing Gbiota food as well as writing numerous article on food and health.
When a new club member registers they need to choose which of the five store categories above they want to register under.
Other members of the club can then geolocate other members by selecting the category or categories of the club members and they will see icons for all members who have registered (their store) as in that category.
If they actually want to buy something they can search under product categories.
For details on how to register contact me firstname.lastname@example.org
Not just a mates club
The Gbiota club is more than a mates club where people can chat about healthy food. It aims to help people set up viable businesses where people can earn honest money by trading food which is genuinely healthy.
It is not a franchise, they are no fees or money to be paid to be in the club, it is simply a business model where people or companies can trade honest and healthy food.
We do not offer commercial advice in the legal sense that a consultancy offers legal advice for a fee but we are happy to chat and offer opinions of how you can set up and run a successful and profitable business.
Mostly members will earn money by putting a price on what they want to sell. This price is totally up to them, a grower will typically charge per product while a boxer will charge a fixed amount per delivery, depending on whether it is to a hub or home.
Buyers pay by credit card while sellers will receive payment directly into their specified bank account. Typically a buyer will have one check out for many purchases and the system will automatically split this and distribute to all vendors.
Members can also come to arrangements among themselves to receive certain benefits.
For example a member member, say a boxer, may arrange with a group of biofoodies to form what is in effect a buying cooperative so they can buy at wholesale prices or take advantage of some special circumstances.
A vendor can set up both retail and wholesale pricing on there site when they register there product.
This is entirely between the individual members and the club admin is not involved in these arrangements however the club admin can assist in the mechanics by setting up an automatic commission on the sales between members to be made upon receipt of a legal agreement (e.g email approval).
The bank makes charges for the credit card payment system and the admin receives a 5% commission to cover the cost of running the service, providing technical support – particularly to the growers on Gbiota beds.
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