The past year has seen its fair share of new online ordering systems and doorstep delivery services in and outside of the local food system. Very few of these tools, however, combine an exclusive focus on local food with the ease of online ordering and the convenience of delivery (AVM Direct). The exception is African Village Market – an online farmers’ market and delivery service that allows customers to shop directly from local farmers and food businesses in their region.
Starting in 2019, African Village Market was founded by Mr. Ebenezer Samuel, CEO and Entrepreneur, a logistic professional turned tech entrepreneur, who decided to leverage technology to better local farms’ produce.
“Agriculture is one of the last remaining professions that gets passed on from generation to generation, and it’s in peril,” Mr. Samuel says. “Buying from a local farm is an investment in food for future generations. We are now democratizing local food. Anybody can get this, anybody can shop this way, and we can deliver it to the door.”
AVM’s goal is to help food producers and vendors thrive in their local markets by conveniently connecting them with consumers. Mr. Samuel sees facilitating sales as just one way to meet this mission and notes that relationships are also critical to the local food system. To this end, African Village Market (AVM) has a built-in GPS and Geo-location platform to allow customers to patronize farmers and vendors, shop directly and you can even schedule orders on the platform. You can add sales to your wishlist or your favorite local finds and discover new vendors and products from your current and nearby location.
This is meant to mimic the logic as it was for an in-person farmer’s market, something that is missing from most online ordering options.
While African Village Market (AVM) started in Lekki, it rapidly expanded as COVID-19 shuttered farmers’ markets and emptied grocery stores. Today, African Village Market operates across Lagos State, Nigeria. AVM has three unique markets: RESTAURANT, SUPERMARKET, and VILLAGE MARKET, with over 131 Products from local vendors.
Anyone in any of AVM’s broad market areas can place an order without any subscription or sign-up fees. Once orders are placed or scheduled, farmers are notified once per week to bring their product to a central fulfillment center in Lekki if it’s Village Market in Bulk. From here, the African Village Market team assembles the orders and ships them out for delivery through our delivery service (AVM Direct). This way, recipients receive produce as freshly as possible from the producer.