Green education: a serious approach to a green economy

In the Netherlands, agricultural education is often called ‘green education’. The current developments in issues such as the increase in world population, climate change, fresh water shortage and the decrease of biodiversity are putting great pressure on the worldwide food supply, nature and the environment. This requires a new green economy, striking a balance between economy, environment and human welfare. The Dutch green education is taking serious action to accomplish this!

Green education: a serious approach to a green economy

19 educational institutes

There are 19 "green" educational institutes in the Netherlands which prepare current and future employees for the broad green sector. A sector where innovation, high-tech applications, national and international trade and focus on durability and bio-based economy are central. The institutes vary in level: from pre-vocational education (VMBO), secondary vocational education (MBO) and higher vocational education (HBO, or University of Applied Science), to scientific education (University). They not only cooperate together in the educational sphere, but also with the government and industry. This ensures that the education and innovation go hand in hand. What began as agricultural education has now become a wide range of green programmes on the subject of plants, animals, nutrition & health and nature & environment.

Education Agriculturw

Dutch programmes go international

Internationalisation is an important priority for green education. Various initiatives are on the way, e.g. in Kuwait, Oman and Saudi Arabia. For example, there is collaboration between the green educational institutes and the Saudi dairy multinational ‘Almarai’. This resulted in a practice focused Dairy and Food Polytechnic (DFP) programme in Saudi Arabia, where the focus is on dairy, poultry and bakery products. Through this programme, young Saudis receive a thorough, practical secondary vocational education to enable them to build a future in their home country. The Dutch green education provides the knowledge and teachers; see more on this under AOC in MENA region. In Egypt there is cooperation between Aequor and the ETP (Enterprise TVET Partnership) Food and with the University of Alexandria.


The Dutch green educational institutes are very interested in more international cooperation. Students gain important experience during international internships and foreign students participating in the Dutch education system is equally enriching for all. If your company is looking for updating or developing an educational curriculum, or for placing Dutch trainees in you company, or if you want to educate or re-educate your employees in the Netherlands, do not hesitate to contact us. You can directly approach the various institutes which are mentioned on this website, or approach one of the contact persons mentioned in attached document, who will gladly help you in your search.