Group of Vietnamese experts visiting Leuven
During 4 days, the SFERE team will guide a group of 11 Vietnamese experts around through short supply food chain initiatives in Leuven and Brussels. It is a very diverse program, with a good mix of field visits and presentations.
Visit Steunpunt Hoeveproducten – guided by Bart Thoelen (KVLV agra)
Our very first stop of the program was KVLV agra, with headquarters in Wijgmaal. Bart Thoelen gave a very clear overview of short supply chains is Flanders. Some issues were very similar, as compared to the situation in Vietnam. Though sometimes the translator needed a lot of time.. Animal welfare, for example, is a concept that was not known among our visitors.
Further, Bart took his time to explain food safety and safety control, a topic that is very relevant for Vietnam.
Visit Steinerschool De Zonnewijzer in Wijgmaal – Jasper en Thomas
Our second stop is probably the real outsider in the program.. We walked from KVLV headquarters to the Steinerschool, which is less then 300 meters .. While at first sight, this might be a strange visit in the context of short supply chains, actually it is not.. In this school, contact between children and nature is a key element. In this sense, gardening and cooking are integrated in the school program. From the age of 9 years, you find the children in the garden. They learn how to make soup, how to cut vegetables, how to make dishes. Most of the production in the garden goes to the cooking activities, but they also sell their production or use it on events.
We took the opportunity to visit more than just the garden. For both the SFERE researchers (Tjitske and Tessa) and our Vietnamese visitors, it was a unique experience to see the atelier where wood is manufactured, the room where youngsters where making their own sculptures and the blacksmith’s atelier..