Albeda, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Greenport, Inholland University of Applied Sciences, The Lentiz Educational Group, Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences, Wageningen University & Research, Wellantcollege, Shipping and Transport College and Zadkine collaborate with the city and businesses for the future of food education in the Rotterdam region. This collaboration will ensure that education in the region is attuned to the rapidly changing employment needs of the food industry. This ambitious collaboration is unique in the Netherlands and Europe.
New business models
A research agenda has been compiled with the title ‘Food for the Future’. How is food entrepreneurship stimulated in and around Rotterdam using innovative technology? In addition to the current research agenda, the Rotterdam Food Cluster has also had an implementation plan drafted. It examines how our region can successfully continue to grow to become an innovative region, where food companies develop new and sustainable business models so that economic growth and social objectives are promoted.
Publication of ‘The Innovative Capacity of the Rotterdam Food Cluster’ research bundle
On 11 September, entrepreneurs Meiny Prins (Priva), Thijs van den Heuvel (Fresh Pack Logistics) and Jan Brouns (Urban Industrial) received the first copies of ‘The innovative capacity of the Rotterdam Food Cluster’ (‘Het innovatievermogen van het Rotterdam Food Cluster’), a collection of studies in the field, from Sharon Janmaat (Rotterdam Food Cluster) and Niels van der Weerdt (Erasmus Centre for Business Innovation). The electronic version can be downloaded here and paper copies can be ordered here.
‘Food for the Future’ collaboration kicks off
On 21 September 2016, mayor Ahmed Aboutaleb, representative of the province Zuid-Holland and representatives of the educational institutions ratified the signing of the partnership. In this programme the participants follow a research agenda called Food for the Future. The agenda was requested by the City of Rotterdam and drawn up by Albeda, Erasmus University Rotterdam, Inholland University of Applied Sciences and Wageningen University & Research. The future-oriented research will examine the economic and social challenges faced by the food cluster in our region.
Some of the skills the industry is requiring at the moment, didn’t exist five years ago. So food related businesses can make excellent use of the design and innovation power of students. In return those students can prepare themselves best for the ‘real world’ by working in it.
Together we are looking at the strategical value and the economic future perspective of the food cluster, the development of collaborations between businesses and a better insight into food supply as an ecosystem. Through Food for the Future we will also learn more about individualizing food and other food factors such as health, happiness and social cohesion over the next few years.
By 2050, 9 billion people will have to be fed, of which 80% will be living in cities. But new technological developments and the wish to produce more sustainably are also influencing the employment needs of businesses in the food industry. So, much work to be done! With these new collaborations the educational institutions can prepare themselves for the future by making sure education fits the needs of the Rotterdam Food Cluster. Because the food cluster encompasses more than 8,000 businesses throughout the whole chain with 43,000 jobs and a combined turnover of € 27 billion.
Would you like your business to cooperate with the research? Do you have an opportunity for a student to help your business further during an internship? Or are you working on a case for which you’d like a scientific sounding board?
Contact Sharon Janmaat for further information.
This collection is the first in a series of publications titled Food for the Future and focuses on how our region achieved a leading position on the global food market and how companies (must) innovate if the region is to hold on to that position.