Located in the southern region of the Netherlands, the municipality of Venray covers 146 square kilometers (90.72 sq. miles) and has a total population of 43,000 in its 14 towns. The city of Venray has 30,000 inhabitants, and the rest of the municipality’s population lives in towns that vary in size between 200-2000 people. Venray has approximately 500 hectares of industrial land and over 2000 hectares of forest and nature reserves, and is located in the province of Noord-Limburg, strategically situated between the cities of Venlo, Nijmegen, and Eindhoven.
Venray’s economy is based on logistics (part of the logistic hot-spot Venlo-Venray), healthcare, manufacturing, retail, tourism, and agrifood. The agrifood sector is located mainly in the countryside and along with the valleys, villages, and forestlands completes the picture of Venray. The challenge and goal is further development of these sectors in a way that respects and fosters their various strengths.
The agrifood sector is extremely important for Venray, yet the future of the sector is unclear. The global demand for protein is expected to increase substantially. However, continuing along the path of further large-scale development in agrifood does not appear to be the long-term solution for healthy and successful businesses in the future. The way forward likely involves innovation employing the region’s expertise in logistics, agriculture, and livestock.
Venray is just one of the initiators in the Eiwitrijk (“Protein Empire”) project. Eiwitrijk brings leaders from the plant and animal protein industries together in an effort to stimulate and support innovation in the agrifood sector. Breeding insects for protein is an appealing prospect for innovation in the sector. Venray supports leading entrepreneurs in creating a platform to further explore the potential of insect protein in the region.