A social enterprise is a business that is changing the world for the better. Like traditional businesses they aim to make a profit but it’s what they do with their profits that sets them apart – reinvesting or donating them to create positive social change.
By selling goods and services in the open market, social enterprises reinvest the money they make back into their business or the local community. This allows them to tackle social problems, improve people’s life chances, support communities and help the environment. So when a social enterprise profits, society profits.
As a group procurement organisation, we firmly believe social enterprises will become an increasingly key component of future business. The Social Enterprise: Market Trends 2017 report, was commissioned jointly by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport and the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. It shows that in the UK there are now an estimated 471,000 social enterprises, employing 1.44 million people. In fact, nearly 9% of the UK small business population are social enterprises and of course this includes plenty of food and non-food suppliers.
Consumers want to buy social
More and more consumers are wanting to buy social and when it comes to food procurement, this is no different. Buying social is about using your money, as an individual or as an organisation, to create a positive impact on the world we live in. When you buy from a social enterprise you are choosing to spend your money with a business that is giving something back, reinvesting their profits to address the most pressing issues, from homelessness and unemployment to ethical trade and climate change, this is something that really resonates with today’s consumers who are more interested than ever before in supporting organisations who have strong principles and that make a difference to the world we live in.
Procurement with purpose
As a leading group procurement organisation, we’re proud to be working with a range of suppliers that are social enterprises, but we want to do more. As a food procurement company it’s the right thing for us to do and it makes good business sense too. Watch this space over the coming weeks and months.