Rejoice Community Supported Agriculture Group
Rejoice is where you can find Taiwanese wheat.
Enterprise/business philosophy and objectives of the founder
Rejoice Bakery has cooperated with small farmers via wheat contract farming to build a product traceability system platform which provides farmers, manufacturers and consumers with a friendly model of communication. By compiling basic data related to wheat farming, it provides new farmers with a reference for land management. Its ultimate goal is to change the agricultural production system, nurturing more varied capabilities for farmers to deliver low-input and extensive agriculture. At the same time, it also allows consumers to understand the importance of food mileage through its promotion of environmental education.
History of development/business model
In 1999, founder Ming Huang Shih set up Rejoice Bakery in Fangyuan, Changhwa, employing people with physical and mental disabilities. He standardised the process of production using his own expertise in industrial management, so that the work efficiency of employees could be improved and the quality of bread could be upheld.
In 2007, a year of soaring food prices, bakeries and consumers had no choice but to passively accept the market price. Because of this, the idea, “why can’t we grow our own wheat in Taiwan?” emerged in Shih’s mind, and he soon created “Rejoice Wheat”. He made good use of the connection between the virtual Internet and physical shops, successfully integrating production and sales channels for the Rejoice Community Supported Agriculture Group.
Meanwhile, the Rejoice Community Supported Agriculture Group has also developed Taiwanese wheat into featured products, such as buckwheat ramen noodles, thin noodles, wheat beer, malt beverages, etc. Its feature-focused marketing not only adds more value to wheat, but also increases farmers’ sense of connection with their job.
Creating social value/mitigating social problems
Looking back at the history of its growth, Rejoice started to cooperate with Lien Hwa Industrial in 2011, the biggest flour factory in Taiwan, when it released the first locally-sourced wheat flour, “New High Mountain Wheat Flour”. In 2012, there were two bakeries and 50 collaborating distributors in Yuanlin City and Changhua City.
From an independent bakery, Rejoice has developed into an enterprise “Rejoice Community Supported Agriculture Group”, although this was not its original intention. Today, Rejoice maintains 487 hectares of contracted wheat fields, which can harvest 650 tonnes of wheat every year. Among these fields, the 150 hectare contracted wheat field in Dacheng, Changhua is the biggest in Taiwan.
In addition, Rejoice regularly hosts music concerts, such as Wheat Field Rhapsody and Encore, where it shares wheat growing experiences with more people and educates them on new agricultural concepts through cultural activities. It also guides many youngsters to engage in projects like Wheat Contract Farming and the Soybean Special Force. Using its actions to increase the local food self-sufficiency rate, it allows more people to participate in the sustainable agriculture movement in Taiwan.