Organic vegetables grown at a local natural reserve, milk sold in repurposed salsa bottles, lavender and cornstarch refillable deodorant, tetra-brick wallets and coca sweets from the Andes – these are just a handful of the products you will find at a hidden yellow warehouse named El Galpón (The Warehouse). Located at the end of a cobblestone road within a quiet railway land in the heart of Buenos Aires, El Galpón is not your average farmers market. Set within a re-adapted train warehouse once left to disuse, this incredible market is the first of its kind in this bustling Latin American capital.
With mobile stalls selling locally sourced organic produce, it has been running as a successful cooperative for the past 5 years, re-investing part of the profits in common services for mutual benefits and inspring a greener way of living for the city’s inhabitants. And unlike The People´s Supermarket in London, which was designed by a branding and advertising agency, El Galpón was the initiative of a group ex-political activists going against the 70’s military dictatorship called Mutual Sentimiento.
As well as running the only place in Buenos Aires for organic and fairly priced items sold directly by producers, and regulated as a co-op, El Galpón is a place dedicated to sustainable culture exchange. Permaculture workshops, eco-design fairs, yoga classes, a barter, an organic vegetable patch and even a community online radio coexist in harmony within one friendly space.
Photos: ©Ana Lisa Alperovich for Inhabitat