Metabolic Newsletter - Issue 5 -  March 2016
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Dear <<First Name>>

It has been another exciting quarter at Metabolic. As you'll read in the updates below, we are very pleased to announce the completion of some significant projects. One of the most notable is our analysis of the global food system, commissioned by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). The results of this year-long study reiterate the urgent need for transitioning the food system to a more sustainable state and have laid the groundwork for a new phase of agricultural innovation and applied experimentation at Metabolic.

We have already translated the lessons of our global food system research into the designs of the largest organic farm on one of Spain's Balearic islands as well as of a showcase greenhouse in what will soon be producing ultra-local food in one of Amsterdam's most sustainable hotels. In our own backyard, we're kicking off our sustainable agriculture research with the planting of our very own food forest and the construction of a demonstration aquaponics production unit at Metabolic Lab, our facility at De Ceuvel.

Meanwhile, we have continued to deepen our work on Circular Economy strategy. Following on the success of the Circular Economy plan we and our partner, Urgenda, developed for the Dutch province of Friesland, we have begun to work with other provincial and municipal governments to develop similar plans. We have continued to provide custom circular economy advice for companies, and are pleased to be kicking off a new partnership on circular procurement with Antea Group.

Our daughter organizations are also making big strides. Metabolic Foundation just recently launched a community Fab Lab in Aruba. Here in the Netherlands, Spectral Utilities is gearing up to revolutionize the electricity grid through their line of plug-and-play energy storage and smart-grid management systems.

Throughout all of these developments, we manage to have fun back at the office. Bonfire season is starting again. And the launch of our in-company complimentary currency, the Metabuck, is leading to some creative testing of how to build small-scale economies from the ground up.

We look forward to hearing from you and welcoming those of you in the area to one of our next company drinks.

Warm regards,

Eva Gladek
Founder and CEO

Metabolic Publishes Study of the Global Food System

Metabolic completed a year-long study of the global food system for the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF). You can get a sneak peak of the full 180-page report here on our website. We will be publishing a summary and launching the report at the end of March with WWF. Follow us on social media to stay up to date.

Eva Talks About Complexity in the Global Food System

Everything is Connected. That was the theme of an event in Utrecht where Eva discussed root causes of our unsustainable global food system and how we can progress using systems thinking. You can watch the entire talk here:

Spectral Utilities is Supporting the Dutch Energy Transition

Spectral Utilities, Metabolic's first spin-off company, is helping to transition the energy sector in the Netherlands. In the Fall of 2015, Spectral installed one of our first energy storage systems at Blijburg, a hip new location for recreation and culture in East Amsterdam. Learn more about the project.

Late last year, Spectral's Founder and CEO Philip Gladek discussed the Dutch energy transition. You can learn more about Spectral on their website, which launched at the end of 2015. 


The Dutch Province of Friesland Takes Towards a Circular Economy

Metabolic's regional scan for the province of Friesland, done in partnership with our partner Urgenda, has moved to the next phase with the founding of the Circular Friesland Foundation. The move gives a boost to the initiative by solidifying cooperation and increasing the available resources to implement circular innovations.

Circular Procurement Gets a Boost

On December 10th, Metabolic and Antea  Group are launching a partnership to help governments and large organizations procure products and infrastructure in a circular way. In the Fall we hosted an event on sustainable and circular procurement at De Ceuvel with Dutch organization Duurzame Leverancier


Metabolic Lab's Greenhouse Comes to Life

Together with Nomad Farmers, Cafe de Ceuvel, and an enthusiastic community of volunteers, we completed the first steps towards installing aquaponics and hydroponics grow systems at Metabolic Lab. Starting in April the greenhouse will be operational and will provide Cafe de Ceuvel with fresh herbs and vegetables. Get a sneak preview by watching a volunteer-uploaded Facebook video showing the water systems. Save the date for our greenhouse opening on April 2nd!


Food Forest Sprouts at Noordoogst

Over the past few months, Metabolic worked with Food Forestry NL and a great group of volunteers worked to create a fully functioning agro-ecological design for a food forest at Noordoogst, the home of our headquarters and urban farm. After extensive groundwork, we started to plant the first trees, shrubs, and herbaceous layers. In May, the food forest will be open to the public. 

Coming up at Cleantech Playground: De Ceuvel

Metabolic Lab is partnering with Youth Food Movement Amsterdam and Cafe de Ceuvel from to host a monthly lecture series about the food system and what sustainability means for consumers. Learn more about the program, dates, and speakers.

From March until May we’ll be hosting Do-It-Yourself (DIY) workshops every last Saturday of the month. Participants will learn how to make their own products, ranging from cosmetics to notebooks. The workshops will be combined with inspiring talks from entrepreneurs who have successfully launched their own DIY products.

Stay up to date on our events using
our agenda. Want to host your own event at De Ceuvel? From workshops to lecture series, we're always interested to facilitate your ideas.

In other news, the 
Biogas Boat, a floating installation that turns organic waste into biogas and fertilizer, finished a successful crowdfunding campaign at the end of last year. Cafe de Ceuvel has since purchased a boat and is busy with renovations. The biogas boat will will transform organic waste into biogas for cooking and nutrients for growing food on site.


Metabolic Foundation Establishes Community Fab Lab in Aruba

Metabolic Foundation recently launched a community makerspace in Aruba. The aim is to provide not only the tools and technologies needed for community improvement but also programming around STEAM education and community entrepreneurship. Students and neighbors have the opportunity to utilize the lab throughout the week and during its open house days. Explore Brenchie’s Lab.

Eva @ Bristol Festival of Ideas

Our CEO was one of the keynote speakers at the Bristol Festival of Ideas this past November. Watch her full speech.


Decentralized Resource Cycle Symposium @ De Ceuvel

In October, Metabolic, KWR Watercycle Research Institute, Waternet, and Advanced WasteWater Solutions (AWWS) hosted a symposium around decentralized water and energy solutions. The conference concluded our TKI research program “Cleantech Playground”, which started in January 2014 to investigate closing resource cycles locally.

Sanderine van Odijk Nominated as Amsterdammer of the Year in 2015

Metabolic's Sanderine van Odijk was nominated along with 9 other citizens of Amsterdam for her work on sustainability and her broad contributions to the city's development. See Sanderine's video interview (in Dutch).

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