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Food Services News South Africa

Sustainable Gastronomy Week kicks off, emphasising 'More Taste, Less Waste'

The inaugural Sustainable Gastronomy Restaurant Week (SGRW), an initiative by the World Food Forum (WFF), a global network supported by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), kicked off this week. The event features youth-run restaurants, local bakeries, and other food services, aiming to educate consumers on how to enjoy delicious meals sustainably.
Source: Freepik

In Rome and other leading cities, including Dublin, Jakarta, Malmo, Athens, and London, several restaurants, all led by chefs under 40, created special menus and dishes for the week, maximising the potential of each ingredient and minimising food waste, all through creative and sustainable sourcing and cooking practices.

The campaign, in its inaugural year, aims to highlight the positive impact restaurants and consumers can have on food insecurity and climate by reducing food waste.

"More Taste, Less Waste": Highlighting the impact

One of the challenges facing sustainable gastronomy is indeed food waste, with about 17% of food wasted in the retail and consumption stages. With this year's theme "More Taste, Less Waste", the initiative on the one hand encourages those behind the cuisine to improve culinary experiences while minimizing food waste, and on the other hand, educates consumers to make more responsible and sustainable choices when it comes to food purchasing and consumption.

Supported technically by FAO and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (Unesco), participating restaurants will serve special menus created following a set of guidelines that take into account the local and regional context, until 24 June 2024.

A new generation of young change-makers gather in Rome to promote sustainable cuisine

SGRW: Amplifying Sustainable Gastronomy Day

SGRW was conceived as an amplifier of Sustainable Gastronomy Day (SGD), celebrated annually on June 18 and introduced by the United Nations General Assembly, FAO and UNESCO in 2017, to promote the importance of sustainable eating and food production.

Celebrating the Day and promoting the SGRW initiative, WFF with the support of The Hunger Project, a nonprofit organization committed to fighting world hunger, hosted a special dinner at the American Academy in Rome, which has a strong connection with youth through its Rome Sustainable Food project.

The dinner, featuring young journalists, influencers, artists from around the world, and young change-makers from FAO, served as a platform for dialogue and exchange among young experts with respect to the UN Sustainable Development Goals and this year's themes of both Sustainable Gastronomy Day and WFF's flagship event to be held in October, which this year is "Good Food for All, for Today and Tomorrow."

During the dinner, the Sustainable Gastronomy Young Chef Award, sponsored by the WFF, was announced, that 2025 will honour young chefs under the age of 40 who have distinguished themselves through their commitment to sustainable gastronomy. The award aims to inspire other young chefs to pursue sustainable practices in the restaurant industry.

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