Malterie de Boortmeerbeek
THE ABANDONED FACTORY IN BELGIUM
Boortmalt Malting was situated with two sites in the small village Boortmeerbeek. This building, the ‘Malterie de Boortmeerbeek’ was used as a silo for the big malting plant in the city center.
The roots of the Boortmalt Malting company starts in Boortmeerbeek. The silo building was built just after the Second World War with funds provided through the Marshall Plan, in order to revive the economy.
The grains were mainly supplied by ship, after which they were dried, sieved, stored, mixed, dosed and finally transported to the actual Boortmalt malting plant. The silo it could store 10 thousand tons of grains. This transport was initially done by horse and cart, later this transport was of course taken over by trucks.
Business Center ‘De Malt’
In 1988 the company starts shifting its activities to the port of Antwerp, as a result the two buildings in Boortmeerbeek became empty. Boortmalt is still active today, but is not longer present in Boortmeerbeek. In fact the company is today one of Europe’s main producers and exporters of malt. At the present time, the group owns twenty-seven malt houses on five continents with approximately a thousand employees. The empty silo building, was eventually converted in 2013 into Business Center ‘De Malt’, a building with offices, workshops, logistics areas, meeting rooms and a restaurant. I visited ‘Malterie de Boortmeerbeek’ in 2006. The production building that became vacant in 1988 was demolished in 2009.