28 Feb Educational programme “The Beezdorf Kitchen” launches
The Beezdorf Kitchen was launched last Thursday at Berlin’s Fuchsberg Elementary School. The Beezdorf Kitchen is an educational programme organised by our daughter company yes&, which takes place in areas close to the retail centres of the OPEN fund.
We recognise the importance of working towards sustainable goals and we believe that the fund’s Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) framework is an important and binding factor in creating long-term value for not only our investors but also for society. OPEN’s portfolio consists of 77 properties with a retail area of c. 250,000sqm and a combined gross market visited by c. 280,000 German consumers daily. As roughly 7.8m households sit within the total catchment areas of OPEN’s retail centres, we are responsible for committing time and resources to fight climate change and food waste.
The educational programme aims to engage and educate school children about the benefits of sustainable food production and supply, how to grow your own food, make healthy food choices and cook healthy meals. The initiative will run for the year, with activities, classes and competitions planned each month. Potager Farm, an urban vertical farming company and joint venture between OPEN and the Greenman Group, hosted the inaugural event and supplied the school with a mini-replica of a vertical farm. The event revolved around the question “how does our food get to the table?”, and the children learned how plants are grown, how food travels to the grocery store and even planted their own seedlings to be harvested and cooked at the next event in spring.
The Beezdorf Kitchen is a project funded by Greenman and OPEN. The project sits under the Beezdorf brand, an educational initiative aimed at providing food education to schools located within the catchment areas of the fund’s retail centres. Beezdorf works with grocery retailers, local nutritionists, educational insitiutions and non-profit associations such as Berliner Tafel e.V., as well as government agencies, municipalities and regional food providers.
Catherine Choo, founder of the Beezdorf initiative, explains: “One of the main influences on climate change is food production. In this regard, educating young people is one of the most sustainable ways to fight for climate protection. Less than 25% of children learn to develop a healthy and sustainable lifestyle at school. With our Beezdorf Kitchen project, we not only want to show local school children how to grow and cook their own healthy fruits and vegetables to inspire them to eat healthily, but also raise awareness at an early age about how to conserve resources in our environment.”
John Wilkinson, CEO of Greenman, adds, “I am very keen for Greenman to have a strong focus on social projects as part of the ESG guidelines of its funds. We are all about a holistic approach when it comes to having a sustainable footprint. In Biesdorf and all other locations where we will implement the initiative, we offer a wonderful opportunity to bring schools, retailers and local producers to the table to show the next generation how we can live more environmentally conscious and improve conditions for all inhabitants of our planet, where possible.”
Read more about our social and environmental projects here.