The strength of the circular economy in Italy for the books

The first bookstore called libraccio opened in 1979 in Milan. Today there are almost sixty points of sale.

We are a reality”green” which focuses on the circular economy, second-hand books in the various sectors of fiction, non-fiction and school books. And then the out-of-print books, the line of stationery at bargain prices (…). We are bookstoresdestination ”, that is to say places where people come to look for us (…). This is how the General Director Edoardo Scioscia defines the identity of libraccioin an interview inBookstore Giornale.

After the crisis, the rebirth

Certainly this reality has suffered during the pandemic, but a lot has also been invested, around two and a half million, to try to open new establishments throughout Italy: the network had 48 stores during the pandemic and today there are 56 outlets. sale. ” NOT We used to employ 470 people, now there are 490 permanent employees Scioscia told Il Giornale della Libreria .

In fact, in 2020, due to the pandemic, turnover had fallen to 81.5 million euros, compared to 85 in 2019. In 2021, the results are very positive: turnover increased again to reach 90 million euros, a better result than in pre-pandemic years.

a local network

The model to which libracciois that of a network of bookstoressmaller, closer and on a human scale“. In terms of size,we start from a minimum of 150 square meters to reach a maximum of 400“.

Precisely, the general director emphasizes that with the pandemic the areas with the most difficulties were those of the large centers and those close to the universities, while in the provinces and in the most peripheral places the situation was better.

In general, the model is one of strong central control and supervision, even if the purchases in the different bookstores are managed independently. Booksellers are certainly not “simple vendors», but they are formed in collaboration with the important school of booksellers Umberto and Elisabetta Mauri.

In addition, in order to promote mutual assistance between stores and the creation of a true bookstore network, sales outlets are being developed.”in a network, opening branches 60-70 kilometers awayScioscia said again.

The Libracciofocuses on used books, but not only. According to Scioscia, in the school sector, second-hand books represent 20% of sales and in thevaried(general literature and non-fiction), two out of every five books sold are second-hand or out of print.

Online sales are also important thanks to the partnership between the, and sites led by Feltrinelli.

Circular economy and shared culture

There are also local initiatives in Italy that combine ecology and reading, in the name of the circular economy. In Taranto, for example, there is a bookstore where anyone who brings in plastic bottles and aluminum cans receives a book in exchange: the plastic is used as currency.

The initiative aims to protect the territory of Puglia and share culture. A form of circular economy that “transforms waste into resources and spreads environmental culture at zero cost», as the organizers of the Plasticaqquà Taranto project point out toGreenme.

The project was implemented by the local association Plasticaqquà Taranto, in cooperation with the Gruppo Sportivo Polizia Locale. The objective is to raise awareness about the issue of selective waste collection and, at the same time, save many books donated by libraries or other stores.

The Ecolibrary initiative was launched in 2020 and resumed on March 1 of this year. The operation is very simple: just leave plastic bottles or aluminum cans in the volunteer office and choose a book from those available. The bottles and cans are then delivered to Kyma Ambiente, Amiu Taranto, who will recycle them.

Photo credits: Libraccio

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