Food and the city

The Village

The Village is a vibrant working community for food entrepreneurs, start-ups, students and other food professionals located at Arboretum West in Almere, the Netherlands. With a focus on stimulating entrepreneurship, it is the perfect place for young and aspiring entrepreneurs. (Starting) food professionals are welcome to register for the Food Pionieers Program, where a leading network will guide and help you to develop your business from your own workplace in Almere.

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An inclusive hub for aspiring food entrepreneurs

‘The Village’ opened in 2021 as part of Flevo Campus knowledge institute. It aspires to be a breeding ground for students and professionals, and a place where (starting) entrepreneurs get the opportunity to work on their own business. The close-knit community aims to be an inclusive hub, welcoming people with all kinds of backgrounds and promoting diverse perspectives. In a broader sense, the Village is the place where the food system transitions into a personal network, education transitions into entrepreneurship and ideals transition into practice.

The Food Pioneers Program

Are you an (aspiring) entrepreneur eager to further develop your food business? Are you looking for an inspiring workplace and community that helps you grow both personally and professionally? Then our Food Pioneers Program is the right fit for you!

During this 6-month program, we will help you accomplish your business goals through various training sessions and guidance by Food Hub, Impact Hub Amsterdam and Flevo Campus professionals. You will dive into personal leadership, product prototyping, storytelling and business modelling; we organise Q&A sessions with food sector professionals, feedback rounds, community drinks, dinners and a closing event. 

Once you are selected, joining the program is entirely free of charge!

Apply if you are…

  1. … an entrepreneur with dedication to developing themselves
  2. … excited to work in an English-speaking environment
  3. … starting your business or looking for ways to develop it
  4. … eager to work with other food professionals in a vibrant space
  5. … looking for a workplace in Almere

Participants in the Food Pioneers programme receive:

  • A (free) workplace in the Village in Almere for six months, and the chance to be part of a unique food community
  • Kick-off and onboarding session
  • Three sprints, incl. workshops on Personal leadership, Prototyping, Transition theory, Business Model Canvas, Sales and Pitching
  • 1-day excursion in Amsterdam and Almere
  • Online learning programme
  • Peer-to-peer work sessions
  • An accountability partner throughout the programme
  • 1-on-1 sessions on local networks/production
  • Closing event
  • Access to the yearly programme from Flevo Campus; meet-up events and other networking opportunities
  • Access to Flevo Campus, Food Hub, Horizon Flevoland, the Impact Hub network and events!

….representing a value of over €3,500!

Meet the Villagers

A total of 45 exciting entrepreneurs found their way to the Village for the #2021 and #2022 editions of the Food Pioneers Program. Meet the entrepreneurs of the latest edition below.

  • Alon Ziv
    Village 2022 | Zomer | Food Pioneers #4

    Alon Ziv

    Alon ferments a diverse and ever changing selection of local and organic vegetables in wooden barrels: Alon’s Pickles. He wants to bridge local consumers and farmers through a delicious probiotic product that makes local eating easy and provides security for organic farmers.

  • David _ Lars
    Village 2022 | Zomer | Food Pioneers #4

    David Damman & Lars van Kranenburg

    Good friends David and Lars decided to turn their passion for flavour into the first Dutch maté company: Mojo Maté. This completely organic and guilt free caffeinated soda is locally crafted in the Netherlands, and made with green yerba maté from Brazil, real fruit juice with a little raw cane sugar.

  • Erika Hirose
    Village 2022 | Zomer | Food Pioneers #4

    Erika Hirose

    Erika not only makes Miso from bread waste, she designed a kit that enables you to do it yourself! Tons of bread worldwide goes to waste: WAKEAT provides a healthy solution. With the help of traditional Japanese techniques that she learned from her grandmother, Erika gives us local and organically made Miso.

  • Eva Lia
    Village 2022 | Zomer | Food Pioneers #4

    Eva Lia-Jordan

    Eva from La Lia serves you delicious 100% all natural Crispy Chilli Oil. Sharing her old family recipe and bringing authentic flavors from the Old East back to the Western world. La Lia gives you that extra kick of spice and crunchy texture to all of your dishes. It’s Eva’s Asian pride, filled in a jar.

  • Girish Balakrishnan
    Village 2022 | Zomer | Food Pioneers #4

    Girish Balakrishnan

    Girish, the founder of skinny g’s, created a planet-first vegan nut butter and energy snack company. His mission is to minimize the impact on the planet by sourcing regenerative organic ingredients as local as possible, to shorten the supply chain, whilst still serving tasty and all-natural food.

  • Hanne van Beuningen
    Village 2022 | Zomer | Food Pioneers #4

    Hanne van Beuningen

    Hanne founded BRAUT: using stale bread as a resource to make an Eastern European inspired drink called Kvass. With so much bread continuously going to waste, fermented bread together with a little bit of Dutch honey is a tasty solution. All resources are locally available in the Netherlands!

  • Jennifer Bootsma
    Village 2022 | Zomer | Food Pioneers #4

    Jennifer Bootsma

    Jennifer wants to inspire people to eat more healthy by growing their own microgreens. She does this with her company KIEMM: the online shop for growing fun in the kitchen. KIEMM wants to take you on an adventure in your own kitchen to find pleasure in easy, tasty and healthy food.

  • Marloes _ Merle
    Village 2022 | Zomer | Food Pioneers #4

    Marloes Meerveld & Merle Slendebroek

    Marloes and Merle make sauces and dressings which are 100% natural and low in calories. They use rescued vegetables that otherwise would go to waste – hence branded UNDONE. Their mission is to change the sauces and dressing market for good with their honest and nutritious products and provide people with easy access to a healthy lifestyle.

  • Nicole McMahon
    Village 2022 | Zomer | Food Pioneers #4

    Nicole McMahon

    Nicole makes chili based condiments that spices up your plate, this turns your meal into a taste explosion instead of just a chore: Real Good Food. Nicole tries to use local ingredients as much as possible. These savory condiments are also vegan and gluten-free, to ensure you no more boring meals.

  • Rabia Kechouh
    Village 2022 | Zomer | Food Pioneers #4

    Rabia Kechouch

    Rabia makes tasty and healthy sweets in the Netherlands with her brand StillSweet. This dietitian offers a healthier alternative to everyone’s sweet tooth, made with whole grains and 100% plant based ingredients that are low in saturated fat. So far, she’s selling these to the hospitality industry and school canteens, to help people get the right nutrition.

  • Raoul Schuurman
    Village 2022 | Zomer | Food Pioneers #4

    Raoul Schuurman

    Raoul makes cold cuts and charcuterie from saved and grass fed Jersey Bulls at Boerderij Eyckenstein. These bulls are considered unsuitable for the regular meat industry, which means they get killed and thrown away. Raoul, together with the farmer he collaborates with, gives Jersey Bulls a different future. Meat that is organically grown, with care.

  • Tanya Vannawat
    Village 2022 | Zomer | Food Pioneers #4

    Tanya Vannawat

    Tan Thai is on a mission to make Thai cuisine future proof by making revolutionary changes to traditional ingredients. Tanya wants to promote a healthier diet with innovative food products. Think of Soy-free tofu from locally grown chickpeas, Traditional Vegan Fish Sauce, and much more.

  • Vimala Moodley
    Village 2022 | Zomer | Food Pioneers #4

    Vimala Moodley

    Vimala cooks South African fusion foods with an explosion of flavors with Sugar & Spice Creations. She shares the taste of South African cuisine in the Netherlands through her catering at events and food workshops.

Food Pioneers Program #4 is currently running. Do you want to be kept up-to-date about the next Food Pioneers program and when registration for edition #5 starts?

Fill out this form!

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