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The Local Edible Exchange is not new. It is based upon an honesty system. You bring something. You take something. We expand on this concept by allowing for pre-purchased exchanges, as explained in our Backyard Growers section

What is the Local Exchange process?


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It does not need to be an edible exchange. It can be like an exchange for anything produced locally. The key is that the local community participates, supports and uses it.

What is a Local Edible Exchange?

A Place To "Trade"

As a proud member of the Trade Shack AU community, I’m thrilled to introduce you to the concept of the Local Edible Exchange. This isn’t a new idea, but it’s gaining momentum, especially in the postcode communities around Brisbane. It’s a simple yet powerful way to connect with your local community, promote sustainability, and embrace self-sufficiency.

The Local Edible Exchange is based on the bartering principle- you bring and take something. But it’s not a trade in the traditional sense. The exchange is based on deposit and collection happening at different time frames. It’s an honesty system that relies on the strength of community connections.

You might be wondering, how is this different from classifieds? Well, the Edible Exchange is not about selling. It’s about sharing. You leave what you have left over and take what’s there. It’s not a transaction, but a cycle of giving and receiving that strengthens community bonds.

At Trade Shack AU, we’re all about creating connections. We’re building a platform that allows you to connect in the virtual world and meet in the real world. Unlike social media platforms that are all about selling, Trade Shack AU is about the whole ecosystem around self-sufficiency for local communities.

We’re not trying to replace existing local exchanges like the REKO initiatives or the Edible Exchange initiatives. Instead, we’re trying to complement them. Our unique approach is to focus on local produce, particularly those produced by backyard growers or farmers. We believe that this is the future of local community farming – small blocks of land with high yields and variety.

Edible Exchange

Where are Edible Exchanges?

Have a look

The Local Edible Exchange is a unique initiative transforming how we think about food, community, and sustainability. It’s a concept deeply rooted in the principle of bartering, a practice that has been a part of human societies for centuries. But the Local Edible Exchange takes this age-old practice and adapts it to our modern world, creating a system that is not only sustainable but also fosters a strong sense of community.

At its core, the Local Edible Exchange is about giving and receiving. You bring something – perhaps some surplus vegetables from your garden, a jar of homemade jam, or a loaf of freshly baked bread. In return, you take something – maybe a basket of ripe fruit, fragrant herbs, or a pot of local honey. It’s a simple exchange but one that has profound implications.

Unlike traditional trading, the Local Edible Exchange is not based on immediate reciprocity. You don’t have to exchange goods on the spot. Instead, the exchange operates on different time frames. You deposit your goods at a designated location, and at a later time, you collect something else. This flexibility makes the exchange more accessible and convenient for everyone.

But what truly sets the Local Edible Exchange apart is its reliance on the honesty system. There are no price tags, no cash registers, no salespeople. Instead, the exchange relies on the integrity of its participants. It’s a system built on trust and mutual respect, values at the heart of any strong community.

The Local Edible Exchange is more than just a way to exchange food. It’s a way to build connections, strengthen community ties, and promote a more sustainable way of living. Participating in the exchange means you’re not just getting fresh, locally-grown produce. You’re also supporting your local farmers, reducing food waste, and contributing to a more sustainable food system.

Several Local Edible Exchanges are operating around the world. For example, the Ballarat Local Food Exchange in Australia is a community-led initiative that promotes local food security and sustainability. The Local Food Exchange in New Orleans in the United States is another great example, offering a platform for local farmers to sell their produce directly to consumers.

In the UK, the Edinburgh Food Social is doing incredible work in promoting local food and education. They run a food truck that serves locally sourced food, and they also offer cooking classes and workshops to educate the community about the benefits of local food.

These are just a few examples of the many Local Edible Exchanges that are operating around the world. Each one is unique, reflecting the needs and resources of their specific community. But they all share a common goal – to create a more sustainable, community-focused food system.

* Note: if the community wants to use the Trade Shack to manage their edible exchange please contact the webmaster on the about page


Not Classifieds

The concept of the Local Edible Exchange might initially seem similar to classifieds, but there are fundamental differences that set it apart. Classifieds, as most of us know, are essentially advertisements. They are platforms where individuals or businesses can sell or buy goods and services. The primary goal of classifieds is to facilitate transactions and to enable the exchange of goods for money.

However, the Local Edible Exchange operates on a completely different principle. It’s not about selling or buying. It’s about sharing. It’s about giving what you have in surplus and taking what you need. It’s a system that is rooted in the spirit of community, not commerce.

In a Local Edible Exchange, you leave what you have left over – perhaps some extra vegetables from your garden, a dozen eggs from your chickens, or a jar of homemade jam. These are not items for sale. They are gifts and offerings to your community. And in return, you take what’s there – not as a purchase, but as a gift from someone else in your community.

This cycle of giving and receiving creates a sense of reciprocity and mutual support that strengthens community bonds. It fosters a spirit of generosity and cooperation, values that are often missing in our modern, transaction-based economy.

In a Local Edible Exchange, there are no price tags, no negotiations, and no sales. Instead, there is trust, respect, and a shared commitment to supporting each other and our local food system. It’s a system that not only provides access to fresh, locally grown food but also fosters a sense of community and mutual support.

Here’s a table that highlights the differences between Local Edible Exchange and Classifieds:

 Local Edible ExchangeClassifieds
PurposeSharing surplus produce within the communityBuying and selling goods and services
TransactionNo money involved, based on trust and reciprocityMoney-based transactions
Community AspectStrengthens community bonds and fosters mutual support Primarily individualistic, focused on personal gain
SustainabilityPromotes local food systems and reduces wasteSustainability is not a primary concern
AccessibilityOpen to all community membersOften requires internet access and technical skills

For those interested in exploring a more traditional route of exchange, our Classifieds section on Trade Shack AU social platform provides a space for buying and selling goods within the community. It’s another way we’re working to connect people and facilitate exchanges in our community.

While classifieds and the Local Edible Exchange might seem similar on the surface, they operate on fundamentally different principles. The Local Edible Exchange is about more than just the exchange of goods. It’s about building a stronger, more resilient, and more sustainable community.



In conclusion, the Local Edible Exchange is a powerful initiative that is transforming our food system. It’s a movement that is not only promoting sustainability and self-sufficiency but is also fostering a strong sense of community. Participating in a Local Edible Exchange means you’re not just getting fresh, locally grown food. 

You’re also becoming part of a postcode community that values sustainability, honesty, and mutual support.

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