Two sisters are gearing up to open an ‘ethical and modern’ supermarket in Brighton this summer.
Ruth and Amy Anslow have already secured the property for the 3,000 sq ft pilot ‘hiSbe’ store and design and fit out are currently underway.
HiSbe, which stands for ‘how it Should be’, aimed to be “more affordable, more fair and more sustainable” than the big supermarkets, which the sisters said “have become out of touch with people”.
The store will include four ‘pods’ for local businesses, two of which will sell hot and cold takeaway food. Fresh produce would be “local if practical, but if not, then British, and if not British, then Fairtrade”, added Amy Anslow.
The store will also stock recognisable brands with high scores on the Ethical Company Organisation’s ‘Ethical Accreditation’ scheme.
Anslow added that like The Body Shop stores, which were “a living embodiment of the brand”, hisBe would give people the opportunity to “find out about the products and understand provenance”.
The company’s chief executive and two non-executive directors have invested in the project, which has also received crowd-funding and small loans. Further investment is being sought.
The sisters set up the social enterprise hiSbe Food CIC in 2010 after noticing people were confused about food. “There is too much misinformation and people don’t know what they should be buying,” said Anslow. “People don’t know whether to trust certifications and supermarket information anymore.”