The Skhaftin bus team members, made up of Ilka Stein, Sanele Msibi and Sidney Beukes, pose for a photo outside the food bus in Johannesburg, South Africa. May 18, 2021. Photo Credit: Thomson Reuters Foundation/Kim Harrisberg

Society South Africa9. June 2021

This Grocery Store Comes to YOUR Doorstep!

A repurposed bus is roaming the streets of Johannesburg’s working-class areas to offer fresh food at a fraction of the price to feed hungry South Africans who struggle since the corona pandemic.

Developed and funded by activist Ilka Stein who “wanted to look at sustainable solutions around food,” the mobile grocery store project was born out of necessity in times of hardship when the coronavirus pandemic impacted millions of South Africans. She hopes that her concept will be reproduced “wherever it’s needed.”

The cupboards and shelves in the Skhaftin bus – which means “lunchbox” in local slang – are filled with vegetables, beans, and cereals. Three times a week, citizens of different neighborhoods of Johannesburg are invited to bring their own containers to reduce waste and hop inside to buy fresh, clean, and affordable food. That way, both hunger, and pollution, two pressing problems, are addressed.

Thomson Reuters Foundation

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