From catching plankton to 'supermarket safari'

World Food Day

Between the numerous greenhouses dotting the local landscape, cattle farms and thriving fishing industry, there's no shortage of food-related activity in the Greater Rotterdam Area. During World Food Day on 16 October, visitors will get a look behind the scenes of these various food supply chains.

A field trip to the Hoeve Biesland organic dairy farm in the Rotterdam hinterland; a health check at Erasmus University Medical Center; fishing for plankton; a visit to the greenhouses at Tomatoworld and a 'supermarket safari': this is just a small selection of the activities visitors will have the opportunity to experience during World Food Day.

Great challenges

An initiative of the Netherlands Ministry of Economic Affairs and the City of Rotterdam, World Food Day is organised in conjunction with Greenport Westland-Oostland, the South Holland Provincial Authority and Rabobank. Cindy Dekkers of Rabobank Westland: 'Three local Rabobanks are closely involved in designing the programme: Rabobank Rotterdam, Rabobank Zuid Holland Midden and Rabobank Westland. These banks play a key role in the food and agri sector in their region and have shared their knowhow, network and other resources for this event. Rabobank believes it makes perfect sense for us to participate in World Food Day, as it is consistent with our strategy of strengthening the food and agri sector by providing funding and sharing our knowhow and networks. This is very important, as the world is faced with a number of great challenges: by 2050, there will be more than 9 billion people to feed worldwide. We believe it is therefore very important to pay attention to the role of the Netherlands within the food supply chain.'

Showcasing Rotterdam

'The idea behind the event is to show people the various links in the food supply chain in a way that's original and appeals to their imagination,' says Maarten Prins of Rabobank Zuid-Holland Midden. 'During World Food Day, doors are opened that normally remain closed to the public. It's important for people to see and learn how their food is produced, processed and transported. We would also like to show them that the Greater Rotterdam Area is currently flourishing in this area. That's really something we can all be proud of.'

Festival vibe

Rotterdam's Schouwburgplein square is one of the key locations during the event. Rabobank Rotterdam's Mario List: 'This is where people can visit a greenhouse, for example, or examine a sea container. There will also be all sorts of activities going on related to food, such as entertaining talk shows and live radio broadcasts. There's a real festival vibe to World Food Day, complete with music and lots of good food. Also, visitors of all ages can choose from fifteen very diverse and challenging field trips.'

For more information about the programme, please visit

Related stories