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  • Writer's pictureEating the Gap

A delicious virtual masterpiece

This November 16th Eating The Gap, the virtual successor to The Flemish Primitives will take place. A few years ago, this gastronomic event redefined the ‘food conference’ concept. Now, organizers Foodpairing & EIT Food teamed-up with executive producer Shakalaka! again to bring to you the most innovative food event in the world. With the help of the Extended Reality (XR) Studio from AED Studios they elevate this virtual experience to a signature show that brings broadcasting to a whole new level.

Eating The Gap brings together the game changers of our food system: world-class chefs, top researchers and innovative startups from around the world. Foodpairing's ambition is to create the most immersive online food experience ever.

More than 100 international chefs en speakers

In addition to local heroes such as Roger van Damme, Michael Vrijmoed and Dominique Persoone, the speaker list includes stars of the culinary world such as Heston Blumenthal, Joan Roca and Andoni Luis Aduriz, to name a few. The list currently stretches as far as South-Korea with 2-star chefs Anh Sung-Jae and Kang Mingoo. Surely your taste buds spontaneously wonder who else will be present?

And it’s not just chefs who make their appearance. The concept brings together scientists, experts and chefs. For example, Marije Jongedijk, the nutritionist of Deceuninck-Quickstep Pro Cycling & Club Bruges, will discuss the diet of a Quickstep cyclist based nutritional needs for one of 2020’s exciting races.

Characteristic for the Ghent-based company behind the event, Foodpairing, is the importance they attribute to this research component. They have already developed new products with impressive flavor combinations for PepsiCo and Nestlé, among others. By involving chefs in these developments from the start and allowing them to test and apply the technologies as quickly as possible, they put state-of-the-art research into practice.

Just as we redefined the concept of culinary conferences with The Flemish Primitives, we are now doing that for virtual food events. - Peter Monbailleu, Shakalaka!

During Eating The Gap, Belgian chefs will be cooking live at the AED studio while in direct contact virtual with chefs and scientists from abroad. Carefully selected social media influencers, with a combined reach of 1.2 million people worldwide, make up an integral part of the program. Eating the Gap targets journalists, chefs, foodies and food professionals from all over the world, a world which is now within everybody’s reach.

A global challenge

Organizing a global event presents you with practical challenges, such as time differences. That is why the event consists of three blocks of 2 hours each, so that chefs from Asia, Europe and The Americas can be our guests.

40 guests on stage, as many chefs and speakers from a distance, a hundred influencers from all over the world, that also brings extra practical challenges. “Actually, the team isn't that much smaller than at a real life event” says executive producer Peter Monbailleu, “After all, there are roles that simply didn't exist before. Just think of the two people who ensure that all virtual guests are ready to participate on time and with a working connection. The live interaction creates many opportunities, even for the host. Not one but two hosts are needed. We have Kevin Major on stage and two Foodpairing team members for the virtual interactions with the audience.”

We want to highlight that possibilities for restaurants do exist in these difficult times, this type of events also offers extra possibilities for the participants. This may well be one of the new forms of seminars people will continue to use after the pandemic. - Bernard Lahousse, Foodpairing

A technical and production masterpiece

XR is short for Extended Reality, the overarching concept defined as ‘the combination of virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), mixed reality (MR) and other immersive technologies.’ Using XR results in a seamless combination of the physical with the virtual environment, providing new, expanded and unique possibilities for almost all audiovisual productions. Perhaps the Eating The Gap food event will transcend itself and usher in a new era for the event industry ...

In these strange times we are bombarded with online green key webinars and livestream events, making it increasingly difficult to keep viewers interested and attentive. With the XR Studio from AED studios we lift this virtual event to an experience with a TV show feeling, with which we hope to keep our audience glued to the screen. We are going to use the almost endless possibilities of the system as much as possible, ” - Thierry Heldenbergh, managing director of AED Display

Practical information

Eating The Gap takes place on November 16th, 2020 from 11.00 AM (CET)

3 time block / 3 topics (details at

  • 11.00 AM (CET) - Plant-Based Revolution

  • 3.00 PM (CET) - Healthier Meals

  • 6.00 PM (CET) - Kitchen 4.0

To provide everyone worldwide with the opportunity to participate, Foodpairing & EIT Food decided to offer free registration for all. Register via:

About Foodpairing®

FoodpairingⓇ is a Ghent-based food tech company specialized in food and aroma analyzes for research and development on new flavor combinations. The company is active worldwide and is one of the forerunners in the digitization of aromas and food products. Foodpairing counts Nestlé, Unilever and Pepsico among its customers. Foodpairing is the go-to foodtech company for aroma and flavor intelligence. It operates one of the world’s largest ingredient and flavor databases, and provides its services to big food companies 100k+ chefs, and consumers worldwide.

Foodpairing is part of Siiqioa ventures, a holding of 4 companies with the shared goal of offering solutions from seed to fork for healthy, sustainable and personalized nutrition. Besides Foodpairing, Siiqoia ventures includes Sympli Good Food (a breeding company / plant-based food company - producer of RADICL) - and a personalized drinking robotics company Mixly. -

About Shakalaka!

Shakalaka! is specialized is content creation and marketing for lifestyle and entertainment brands such as Cirque du Soleil, Hans Zimmer Live On Tour, 2Cellos, The Flemish Primitives, Light Art Knokke-Heist, Grand Casino Brussels Viage and The Great Gatsby Immersive.

About AED Studios

AED Studios is the largest media complex in the Benelux, located in Lint (Antwerp) and offers a complete infrastructure for the production of films, TV programs, show and tour rehearsals and events. The site contains 16 studios, 5 backstage areas with 42 hotel rooms and 17 apartments, 5,000 m2 of office space, a public foyer, warehouses, a clothing and wood workshop, a helicopter port and a restaurant. -


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