‘Farmer and City are looking for transport’

‘Are logistics and regional food  a dilemma or are their new opportunities? What can we learn from initiatives dealing with this topic and what is the actual status on supply, demand and logistics of regional food in Amersfoort.’  

These questions were subject of presentation and discussion at the Amersfoort the local support group meeting of 3 March. Besides  LSG members several farmers from the region and representatives of local logistics businesses attended the meeting.

Key note speakers of existing small companies dealing with sourcing and transporting of regional or organic food like Willem & Drees, Beter Bio and Beebox shared their dilemma’s and solutions on logistics and regional food, followed by a presentation on the results of a survey on supply, use and logistics of regional food in Amersfoort retail, catering and restaurant facilities. The main conclusions were:

  • Although demand is increasing, regional food is still a niche in the assortment of food companies in Amersfoort (less than 5% of the total) and often used as a marketing instrument;
  •  Consumers are demanding more transparency in the food chain and want to be reconnected with the local and regional growers;
  •  Local2local and local4local are new impulses in local based food economy;
  •  Smart solutions like a city food hub were regional food is collected  for further city distribution can give regional food use a boost.

Logistic ideas on how to combine transport of regional food from farmer to user were discussed in several workgroups and resolved in several interesting new focus points. For example, more than 300 vehicles of a taxi company are daily used for dedicated passenger transport to destinations in the Amersfoort region and drive empty back to the city. Is it possible to bring on their  journey back to the city food deliveries to a local hub? Certainly to be continued….