Gran Tomatina: Colombia’s Tomato Fight Festival

Ten tonnes of inedible tomatoes take centre stage at the colourful annual event

Locals and tourists in the Colombian town of Sutamarchán celebrate the end of the harvest season in an usual way – by pelting each other with ripe tomatoes.

Known as the Tomato Fight Festival, or Gran Tomatina, the 15th staging of the annual festival was held on Sunday – the first since pandemic restrictions were lifted.

The unusual event is just one part of a three-day cultural festival that signifies the end of the harvest season in the region, which is well known for its tomato production, said Euronews in 2019. Tomatoes used in the fight are left over produce from the harvest that are not suitable for people to eat.

According to the festival’s official website, some 10,000kg of tomatoes are thrown at the event, which has grown in popularity throughout the years and now attracts some 20,000 people to the region each year. It is inspired by a similar festival that takes place in Buñol, Spain, at the end of August.

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