Where’s Eggplant at?

As you may know, this project is a collaboration between 16 Danish food co-ops who received a grant from the Danish Foundation for Organic Agriculture to develop an open source membership system for local food co-ops. That grant has allowed us to hire IT consultants Socialsquare to facilitate a process to bring together volunteer developers to develop this system throughout 2015. But as we enter 2016, the formal part of this collaboration has come to an end. And thus, Socialsquare is no longer formally involved in the project, though some of their employees may continue to contribute as volunteer developers.

Unfortunately, we haven’t yet reached our goal of building a Minimal Viable Product that can be tested in a local food co-op. As often happens with IT projects, it has proven to be a more complex and a slower process than we had anticipated. Particularly, this is because we have had to reorganise the project as we found that the Scrum process that we started out with wasn’t well-suited to working with a larger team of volunteer developers.

Even so, we’ve come a long way. You can get an overview of the existing functionality and test it on our test server here:

A current estimate is that there is about another 100 hours of work to have a MVP ready for test and use in a local food co-op. But since there is no longer any consultants or developers paid to work on Eggplant, all development from here on in will be done by the volunteers of the Eggplant community along with the members of the local Danish food co-ops. It’s a lot of work, and based on the current rate of progress with our bi-weekly hack days, it’ll take the community a long time to reach this goal.

Therefore, the collaborating food co-ops have made the following plan to get a first version of the system ready to go:

1. The co-ops hire a Django developer who can put in a focused effort to finish a MVP version of the system.. The food co-ops are currently trying to raise the money necessary for such a hire. If you’re interested in the job, please drop us a line and a link to your GitHub-profile at eggplant@kbhff.dk

2. The first test will take place at Køge Økologiske Fødevarefællesskab. A number of food co-ops have offered to test the system, but Køge are willing to commit a number of volunteer hours to set up test and give feedback on the system.

3. All the Danish food co-ops are encouraged to contribute to the project in any way they can. Not just by recruiting volunteer developers, but also designers, testers and volunteers that can help organise the practical side of the development, including cooking, making snacks and organising hack days and workshops. Join us on Slack if you’re interested. 🙂

The end of the formal part of the project also means that I’m no longer paid to be the project manager of Eggplant, and no longer can dedicate as much time to the project. I will continue on as Product Owner and go-to-person for the development group. But will be less active in coordinating development. If you’re interested in helping out as project manager and/or product owner for Eggplant – feel free to get in touch – either on Slack or by sending a mail to me at eggplant@kbhff.dk


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