DST-NRF Centre of Excellence in Food Security: Supermarkets and informal township entrepreneurs locked in symbiotic but uncomfortable relationship


A study in Philippi has shown that the advent of supermarkets in townships has changed how communities shop, and how informal food traders and spaza do business and make a living. But it also highlights an opportunity to encourage informal businesses.

The concentration of formal retailers within the confines of the precinct area does not seem to be having a positive impact on opportunities for small-sized informal businesses –  Image by Sustainable Livelihoods Foundation

When big-name supermarkets started expanding their footprint in the post-apartheid era and increasingly set up shop in South African townships, it was assumed that this would spell the end of informal food traders and spaza shops who, it was thought, wouldn’t be able to compete.

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by DST-NRF Centre of Excellence in Food Security – http://foodsecurity.ac.za/news/supermarkets-and-informal-township-entrepreneurs-locked-in-symbiotic-but-uncomfortable-relationship/?utm_content=buffer33553&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer

Mologadi Makwela