Circular Supermarket

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaper


Supermarkets rely of global, linear food supply chains which are precarious, resource-hungry and wasteful. Transitioning to a circular economy, where resources are reduced, shared and reused will require significant change to how food is made, processed and moved. Through systems analysis, scenario thinking and propositional design this paper explores how supermarkets might transition to the circular economy. The proposition focuses on: (1) how
resource use can be decreased through hyper-local production; (2) how supermarkets might close resource loops; and (3) how resource productivity may be achieved through sharing.
Using Belfast in Northern Ireland as a testbed, the proposition focuses on how circularity can be achieved by transforming the supermarket from a node in a linear food chain to a selfsufficient hub for food production and processing as well as retail. Visualised using simple ‘from-to’ diagrams and photomontages, the new supermarket hub named Circular Beehive, rewires mobility, energy, food, packaging and labour flows in a neighbourhood. The proposition is holistic and nested, reflecting on the spatial, social, ecological, technical and infrastructural implications of a circular transition; from the scale of food to the neighbourhood, city and region.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 10 Dec 2021
EventThe International Symposium of Circular Systems for the Built Environment - Eindhoven, Netherlands
Duration: 10 Dec 202010 Dec 2020


ConferenceThe International Symposium of Circular Systems for the Built Environment


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