La Tomatina is the world’s biggest food fight in Buñol Valencia

MAYHEM: For one day a year, the streets of Buñol turn red for the annual La Tomatina Festival. CREDIT Flickr / AP

THERE was food glorious food in the village of Buñol in the Valencia region last week.

Thousands of revellers took to the streets to compete in a unique spectacle, the La Tomatina Festival.

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Dubbed as the world’s largest food fight, nearly 22,000 people showed up dressed in goggles and old clothes, armed with over 180,000 freshly ripe tomatoes, ready to cause mayhem.

The festival started in 1945 when a street fight broke out in a vegetable market in the Valencian village.

The local youth decided that they had so much fun throwing the vegetables at each other they did the same again the following year, only this time they were armed with tomatoes, and so the tradition began.

This year, nearly 145 tonnes of tomatoes will be transported in via six trucks, ready to be hurled at fellow party goers.

Due to the huge popularity of the event, this year’s festival was ticketed, with 17,000 going on general sale, with another 5,000 for village residents free of charge.

Extra security was also drafted in after the recent violent attacks in Valencia, ensuring the event ran without incident.

The tomatoes in the festival come from Extremadura, lauded for their cheap price, low quality and inferior taste, meaning that participants don’t feel too bad about squandering one of Spain’ most/prized foodstuffs.

And what happens after the streets empty and the clean up starts? The town looks brand new as the acidity of the tomatoes acts as a disinfectant.


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