Grain network of Brouwerij 3 Fonteinen wins BioVLAM for innovative entrepreneurship

Grain network of Brouwerij 3 Fonteinen wins BioVLAM for innovative entrepreneurship
Grain network of Brouwerij 3 Fonteinen wins BioVLAM for innovative entrepreneurship

The BioVLAM was awarded to Brouwerij 3 Fonteinen for the launch of a biograin network in the Pajottenland. This award, an initiative of the organic sector in collaboration with VLAM, rewards a passionate and innovative organic entrepreneur.

For the BioVLAM 2022, the Flemish organic sector and VLAM again looked for organic entrepreneurs who passionately innovate and make their company more sustainable. Twelve registrations from organically certified companies were received this year.

In July, the professional jury, consisting of representatives of the sector organizations and VLAM, selected five nominees. The jury then visited these five organic companies and assessed them on their passion for organic, innovation and sustainability.

Winner: the grain network of 100% local, organic grains for Brouwerij 3 Fonteinen

Brewery 3 Fonteinen from Beersel is awarded the BioVLAM 2022 for its efforts to launch a Pajots grain network of 100% locally grown, organic grains to process in its lambic. It also encourages grain farmers to switch to organic. The project started with organic and non-organic farmers, but since 2020 only organic farmers are involved.

The jury was especially convinced by the introduction of a renewed, local and circular model for grain cultivation in the Pajottenland and surroundings. As an immediate effect of this project, the participating organic grain growers become more resilient: they receive a fair price for their crops and there is a good relationship between farmer and processor.

Manager Werner Van Obberghen of Brouwerij 3 Fonteinen received the award from Patricia De Clercq, Secretary General of the Department of Agriculture. Van Obberghen responded enthusiastically: “We are extremely honored with the BioVLAM, but the prize is mainly for all the organic farmers with whom we work so well and who have sometimes put their shoulders to the wheel against their better judgement. We are a brewery, so we will definitely drink a nice Gueuze!”

Brewery 3 Fonteinen will be a proud ambassador for the organic sector in the coming year.

From land to lambik

Brewery 3 Fonteinen is one of the last traditional lambic breweries and gueuze distilleries in Belgium. De 3 Fonteinen wants to preserve the authentic tradition of lambic, but for such a quality beer you need quality grains. Less than 4% of the grains used by Belgian brewers are grown on their own soil. The brewery would like to re-establish a direct link between land and lambic.

That is why the Pajots Granennetwerk was started: a collaboration with organic grain growers who supply locally grown organic grain from the Pajottenland for beer production. In the meantime, the network already has ten organic farmers. They also propagate ancient landraces of wheat and barley and of organic hopping, crucial to improve the taste in the beers. In this way, the project gives a nice boost to organic grain farming in the Pajottenland.

When will the first biolambik be on the market? Because the traditional lambic takes a lot of time to ferment and mature, there will be a first, small edition next year. The majority of biolambik based on locally grown organic grain will not be available until 2024 at the earliest.

Who was nominated?

These were the four other nominees of the BioVLAM 2022:

  • In the spring of 2021, Bio-Planet set up a chain with four organic arable farmers, a flour mill and a bakery to promote Belgian organic baking wheat for organic bread. There are now ten partners.
  • Kaasmakerij De Zuivelarij in Berlare found a culinary solution to give their tasty whey a longer life: with the social bakery Compaan they will soon be marketing whey bread (via Bio-Planet).
  • Self-picking farm Rawijs in Lochristi loves ‘do-it-yourself innovation’ and is really supported by its members: more than 100 cooperative members play an active role in the company.
  • Vitaetom in Zwijndrecht grows a wide variety of organic fruit and vegetables. Their brand new conservatory of 9,500 m² has the most modern facilities in the field of cultivation and energy savings.

On you will soon be able to read more about the innovative projects of the nominees of the BioVLAM 2022.

The article is in Dutch

Tags: Grain network Brouwerij Fonteinen wins BioVLAM innovative entrepreneurship

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