The organic sector is a rapidly growing market. The sector has grown by 50% since 2007. Consumers are looking for quality certified products. Do you want to open an organic store? In this article, we give you all the information you need to know before getting started.
Why open an organic store?
The organic sector market is a fast growing market. The demand for organic products is increasing rapidly. Consumers are driven by their health benefits, environmental considerations and the quality they offer. In addition, the population wants to consume local.
Opening a store is a good opportunity as it will allow you to offer products to a rapidly growing market. In addition, customers are willing to pay more for better quality.
Do I need to be a graduate to open an organic store?
You do not need any degree to open an organic store. However, if you want to gain knowledge before opening your store, there are many training courses available.
You can follow a CAP (Certificate of Professional Qualification) in the sale of specialty products, food substitutes, as a commercial employee or a greengrocer. If you want to get a baccalaureate, be aware that there are professional level courses in commerce and sales/quality advice in food products.
What are the rules for opening an organic store?
To open an organic store, it is mandatory that you are registered with the Trade and Company Register. In addition, you must obtain certification from an organization approved by the National Institute of Origin and Quality such as Ecocert or Certisud. Lastly, you must declare yourself to the agency bio, which will conduct inspections at your store at least once a year.
With regard to the products you sell, it is imperative that they meet the standards of cleanliness and freshness. In addition, the sale of diet food and food supplements is highly regulated. Keep in mind that many organizations such as Certisud, Qualité France or Ecocert are responsible for regulating distributors and importers of organic products.
If you want to sell alcohol in your store, you will need to apply for a take-out license. To obtain it, you must make an announcement at the Town Hall. In addition, you must compulsorily complete “Operating Permit” training at an approved organization before opening your shop.
Other standards must be respected, you must respect the standards of conformity of equipment to performance of weight, cleanliness, accessibility, fire and prices.
What are the formalities to open an organic store?
1- Choose legal status
In order to choose the best legal structure for your organic store, we recommend you to hire an attorney or legal professional. You can also consult legal techniques or our comparative table of legal positions to have a clear view of the advantages and disadvantages of each position.
2- Build your business
To set up your business, you need to contact the Chamber of Commerce and Industry in your department to register with the Register of Businesses and Companies. After registering you have to choose your name. We advise you to ensure that your name is not used and protected with INPI.
6 Tips for Successfully Opening Your Organic Store
1 – Do a market study
To better understand your environment and refine your project, it is important that you conduct a market study. This will allow you to determine the typology of your customers, their expectations and the level of competition. Don’t hesitate to determine organic market trends.
2 – Work on your finances
So that you can run your store for a long time and get investment. It is important that you work on your finances. For this purpose, you need to prepare a business plan presenting your project as well as your provisional financial plan.
good to know
As an indication, the initial investment to open a franchised organic store is usually between €80,000 and €130,000. The average turnover is €250,000. Among the main expenses, you will count the costs of establishment, premises, works, marketing, franchise and acquisition of shares.
3 – Choose between clarity and freedom
If you choose to build a franchised organic store, know that you will be able to benefit from the brand’s brand awareness. Customers are then already more familiar with your brand, which will make it easier to attract your first customers. In addition, you will be supported and mentored through all the steps to open your organic store. For example, you will be assisted in the development of your concept, supplier selection, logistics, marketing, sales as well as managing your cash flow. Franchised store chains such as Biocop, La Vie Claire or Naturalia have a growing reputation in the organic market. This type of store is experiencing an average sales growth of 15% and customers appreciate these brands. However, be aware that your freedom will be more limited if you open an independent store as you will also have to respect the brand’s guidelines, especially in terms of merchandising.
If you choose to set up your own organic store, you will benefit from more freedom in choosing your products and managing your business. You will also have better margin. You can also create your own concept as per your wish. However, you will face stiff competition from organic franchise stores as well as the organic section of supermarkets. In addition, the steps will be more complicated to take.
4 – Find your concept
To find your concept, it’s important that you think about the types of products you want to sell in your organic store. To refine your concept, we advise you to refer to your market study as well as the customer expectations that emerged from it. Your concept should meet the needs and expectations of your future customers. Analyzing your competition will also allow you to work out the points of your concept that you should focus on. Which are the best selling products? Which are the best sellers? Why ?
If you choose to open a franchise organic store, know that you will be limited in the choice of your concept, but with refinement.
5 – Choose the right place
The choice of the location where you are going to open your store is extremely important as it is the one that will have a great impact on the success of your store. If you choose a passing location, it will allow you to gain visibility and customers quickly. However, choosing a less visible location will save you money on rent but will require more effort to improve your visibility.
Doing market research will help you choose your location. We recommend you refer to this and your strategy to find the best location. In fact, a location in a dynamic downtown location, in the center of town and close to your target’s frequency spots will allow you to attract more customers.
6 – Communicate when your shop opens
When you are ready to open your store, you need to think of a marketing plan to attract your future customers. For example, you can conduct street marketing operations, offer loyalty cards, and highlight local producers. In addition, you can offer early promotions to improve your visibility and capture the attention of your future customers. You can also organize a conference on topics related to organic farming.
For example you can also propose an animation with local producers. This will highlight your store and inform passersby.
Also remember to ensure your presence on the Internet! By creating your website you will be able to ensure the continuity of your activity thanks to Clicks and Collects or Delivery!
What are the other obligations to open your organic store?
choose the right insurance
To cover your organic store, it is important that you choose the right insurance. If you have a company car it is mandatory that you have health insurance and future insurance for organic stores and professional car insurance. In addition, we strongly recommend that you take professional civil liability insurance so that you can be covered in any problem as well as professional multi-risk insurance. We recommend that you compare several types of insurance, especially traditional insurance, before making your choice.
Equip yourself with the right tools
To be able to start your own business, you need to be equipped with the right tools. You will need equipment for your sales area such as a cash register, a cold room, refrigerated display cases, shelves and computer equipment. You also need to think about your stock and weighing equipment.
open a business bank account
To manage your business you need to open a business bank account. We advise you to inquire from traditional banks as well as neo-banks that offer very attractive rates.
questions to ask
What is the legal status of an organic store?
How much budget to open an organic store?
On average, the budget for opening an organic store is €150,000.
How to find the right organic supplier?
We advise you to find out about the main suppliers during your market research. If you are a franchisee, your brand will be able to advise you on procedures.