Newsletter April 2023
The objective is taking shape
Spring is finally here! The ground is drying out and the tractors are heading out into the fields to prepare this year’s crops.
As we wrote in the last newsletter, the project team for the Food Experience Centre has spent the winter thinking about what we want to achieve through this project, and this has resulted in a vision and a mission for the site, integrated into a project plan. The vision is linked to a list of activities in order of priority, along with the expertise and resources that they will require. The plan that we have drawn up is a living document that will accompany the project as it advances.
The preliminary mission for the Food Experience Centre:
“Every day, our target group will enjoy a unique experience that delivers knowledge about food, light bulb moments and greater interest in where food comes from. Taste buds will be tickled in an inspiring setting. Our visitors will recommend us to their friends and will want to return again and again.”
As part of the project planning moving forward, extra resources and expertise are being added to the project team. As well as making full use of our internal resources, we will also have Anders Carlsson, former director of Visual Sweden, on board as the project progresses.
The project team has most recently been focused on both completing and beginning projects. We have just concluded a two-year project financed by the Swedish Board of Agriculture and also submitted an application for a new project in the tourism industry to the same funding provider.
Among Mjölby Municipality’s plans for 2022 are a series of impact analyses looking at the effect of the initiative on businesses in and around the municipality, as well as a market analysis of local accommodation providers. Accompanying these will be the preparatory groundwork, including archaeological and wildlife surveys of the proposed site outside Väderstad.
Positives for our partners
The founding principle of the initiative is that you, our partners, help to develop the concept together with Mjölby Municipality. The aim is for it to be a showcase for the entire food industry – created by the industry’s stakeholders.
It is now time to renew the Letter of Intent (LoI) that all our partners have signed. We hope you are keen to continue your involvement into the next phase, as we get even closer to establishing a globally unique Food Experience Centre. So partners please note – a new LoI will be coming shortly!
Exchange of experiences with the Netherlands
We are now finally planning to visit our friends in the Dutch town of Ede, to find out all about their World Food Center Experience. It is like our Food Experience Centre, but on a slightly smaller scale, and is only an indoor experience. Their plan is to begin building the centre this year, and to open it
2023/2024. Our group of 16 participants will be heading there on 11–13 May and we will, of course, share experiences from the trip in the next newsletter.
In late April, we will be conducting a new series of workshops with our working groups, which all our partners have been invited to. Looking at last year’s results, we were able to identify three focus areas for us to work on further:
- Focus on the experience and target groups
- Knowledge transfer
The working groups will continue to add some detail to the ideas that people want to see implemented at the activity centre. We are also planning an additional one or two workshop series in the autumn.
Our project team and steering group continue to hold regular meetings. We are very pleased to report that the steering group has two new members: Therese Rahnel from Visit Östergötland and tourism industry strategist Anders Hallin.
If you have any questions or comments, please contact one of us below. Until the next time!
The European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development: Europe investing in rural areas