At Rio 2016 there are going to be approximately 17,500 athletes at the Olympic Games and 8,500 at the Paralympic Games. Such a large number of athletes, and the huge number of support staff that goes comes with them, require a huge food service undertaking. The food supplied at the Olympic Village has a challenge to cater to a diversity of sports, cultures, ages and special dietary needs. Below is some information about the Olympic Village food service and menu for Rio 2016. See more about Olympic Village nutrition and links to information about the food supplied at other Olympic Games.
The Dining Spaces
The organizers have constructed a kitchen described as the size of an American football field and a dining room twice that size. In actual measurements, the main dining hall has a floor space of 24,700 metres squared. The kitchen will prepare 60,000 meals each day for over 18,000 athletes, coaches, and staff, requiring a team of approximately 2,500 people working around the clock, including about 20 chefs. There will be 10 serving 'islands' in the main hall, separated by themes. There will be five different all-you-can-eat buffets — Brazilian, Asian, International, Pasta and Pizza, Halal and Kosher – as well as a traditional Brazilian churrasco (barbecue) restaurant. The international breakfast options include congee, miso soup, and natto.
The Food Supplied
The food service is aimed to provide food that is familiar and nutritionally balanced to assist the athletes to reach their peak performance. The food service must also cater to individual cultural requirements in addition to sport-specific dietary needs. In additional to that, they aim to showcase some local specialties, such as farofa, tapioca, brigadeiro and pão de queijo, and Brazil's fruits like caju, acai, carambola, caqui, goiaba and maracuja.
To aid the athlete to make the best choices, the food will have information that explains how many calories, how much protein, carbohydrate, fat and salt it contains. The food will also be labelled if they contain gluten and lactose, with gluten and lactose free options available.
- Rio 2016: Taste of the Games
- Pelly F, Parker Simmons S. Food Provision at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games: Expert Review and Future Recommendations. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2019 Jul 1;29(4):382–387.
- Olympic Village nutrition, includes links to information about the menu at other Olympic Games.
- Nutrition at the Olympics
- History of the Olympic Games Athlete Villages
- Nutrition for Athletes at Major Events