International partners of the province of Flevoland (The Netherlands) gave advice to the province on strengthening the food chain during their visit to the region. They stimulate the province to develop an active vison on food together with education, businesses and other government institutions.
From July 3rd to July 6th representatives form Bulgaria, Romania, UK and Italy visited Flevoland fora ‘peer review’. These reviews are part of the European Interreg-project FoodChains 4 EU. The project’s five European regions and their universities inspire each other on regional food chains. They visit and advice each other in these peer reviews.
The partners visited the brewery on Stadslandgoed de Kemphaan, Stay Foodgroup, Aeres University of Applied Science and the Urban Greeners on the Floriade terrain in Almere. There were presentations by Flevo Food Association on regional food chains and brand and by Iceberg company on e-commerce. The European partners were impressed by the level of ambition and the willingness to take new paths towards new possibilities in Flevoland.
The province provide the partners with an assignment. Flevoland is known for its large scale agricultural produce for the world market, but an increasing number of companies are aiming more on the regional markets. They want to decrease the distance between farmer and consumer. The province is looking for the best way to support these entrepreneurs.
A possible answer to this issue was given in the final presentations by the partners at the closing meeting on July 6th. They concluded that all those involved worked very hard but independently from each other. The main advice was that the province, educational institutions and companies should work on a joint vision and action plan on food with concrete goals. Links to other sectors and subjects like health should also be linked. Also, the cooperation between the three parties must be strengthened. A business mentoring program could be developed to support businesses. In the coming months the advice will be translated into concrete actions.
View the video report of the peer review on YouTube.