Sustainability Through Cheese And Football

  • As a part of the Amsterdam ArenA’s sustainability goals the stadium is partnering with local dairy farm Dikhoeve to re-purpose the stadiums grass waste into the farms composting system. The farm’s cheese is then used within the stadium, creating a closed-loop system.

    The Amsterdam ArenA, the largest stadium in The Netherlands, is one of the leading stadiums in the world for sustainability. The ArenA has already been awarded a Golden Green Key certificate which is the highest international label for sustainable tourism and business centers. Prior steps towards sustainability have included the installation of solar panels across the entire roof, which generate an annual total of 930,000 kWh of electricity. The building has also achieved net climate-neutrality.

    The Amsterdam ArenA
    The Amsterdam ArenA

    The ArenA hosts its own Innovation Center (AAIC) which seeks to explore solutions to improve profitability, sustainability, safety, and customer experience. The stadium has been partnering with near-by farmers to stimulate the local economy and strengthen relationships within the neighboring area. At first, the AAIC hoped to feed the stadium grass to the sheep at local dairy farm Dikhoeve, but this has proven to be a bit of a far-fetched idea. The stadium grass, which needs to be replaced annually, is still being used in the farm’s composting system however.

    Geertje Kuiper of Dikhoeve, photo by ZTRDG
    Geertje Kuiper of Dikhoeve, photo by ZTRDG
    ArenA cheese

    While the grass from the ArenA currently accounts for only 1% of the compost matter in the five-hundred sheep farm, the Innovation Center is focused on enhancing local food production and the stadiums role within this system. The ArenA actively seeks to propel sustainability and uses Dikhoeve cheese at its events as well as business meetings throughout the week. By re-purposing the ArenA grass for compost and utilizing the farm’s cheese at the stadium, a closed loop system is created between the two businesses. This initiative is not only benefiting the ArenA and reducing both waste and food mileage, but is also strengthening a sustainable social relationship at the local level. The ArenA is currently breaking ground on a global scale and reminding the world of the importance of making improvements at the local level.