La Tomatina returns to Buñol

The world’s largest food fight, La Tomatina (tomato fight) returned for its 74th year on Wednesday with 22,000 participants and a staggering 145,000 tomatoes.

La Tomatina started in 1945 during a parade in the town of Buñol near Valencia when a group of children began throwing tomatoes from a local fruit and vegetable stand at a man that had become angry with them for causing him to fall. The following year, the children brought tomatoes from their homes to throw at each other and over the years the tradition escalated with people travelling from all over the globe to take part in the crazy festival.

Large trucks drive through the tiny streets, laden with tomatoes which are scooped up by the participants and thrown at each other. The entire town runs red and all of the people wear white t-shirts which soon become soaked in tomato juice. The procession goes through the town to the main square where the tomato juice is so deep that revellers practically have to swim to the other side.

After the fight, the elderly ladies from the village can be seen standing in the doorways of their townhouses with hosepipes to shower off the smelly, red and well-marinated participants.

Hundreds of local police and security personnel are present at the event to ensure the safety of those taking part.

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Written by

Ben Mulvey


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