The place where resilience and sustainability go hand-in-hand
Winston Churchill once said: “Never waste a good crisis”. Although recessions undeniably entail suffering, they also offer opportunities. They challenge us to reinvent ourselves and face the future with redoubled resilience.
That is exactly what we have managed to do in Sowepo vzw, after the recession of 2008-2010: we stayed true to our mission to offer as much significance, structure, identity and a place in society to our employees.
When our business model and turnover were under threat, we started our search for a new product that would allow us to activate our employees instead of suffering unemployment. We aimed for a range of products that would live up to the heritage of our region.
Foodsavers avant la lettre
In this quest, VLAIO and VIVES ACADEMY supported us with their expertise. The tasteful result of this cooperation was born with the name: “Houblonesse”, a hand-crafted range of regional, hop shoot based products.
With Houblonesse, we have succeeded in developing new talents in our employees towards our goal of circular and short-chain economy.
A product that used to be considered waste – the hard, fibrous part of hop shoots – was given a new destination. From now on, it is used as a raw material for the high-end products of Houblonesse.
That’s how we became “food savors” avant la lettre.
Profits generated with Houblonesse support our mission. These funds are fully used to professionalize our Houblonesse activities within Sowepo vzw.