Chantelle Nicholson was one of a group of chefs that took part in the launch of the ‘chefs’ manifesto action hub’ in London to promote sustainable cheffing.
Chefs from all over the world attended, with UK representatives including the Tredwells chef-patron, Justin Horne of Tiny Leaf London, Arthur Potts Dawson of Acorn House and Water House and consultant Jozef Youssef. The group explored how chefs can choose sustainable suppliers, reduce food waste and prioritise local, sustainable ingredients.
“Some of it is education, thinking about what’s on the menu, where they source, food waste – it’s just there as a starting point to get people thinking so they take that action themselves and run with it,” said Nicholson, who is also group operations director of Marcus Wareing Restaurants and was awarded Manager of the Year at the 2016 Catey Awards.
She added: “If one chef starts to look at one thing in their kitchen and does something positive with it that’s moving forward… Sustainability is not just about recycling and food waste, it’s also about people, and if you’re not teaching skills and moving those on it’s not going to be a sustainable industry.”
The week-long event last month at Omved Gardens in north London aimed to instigate activity in the city and encourage chefs to take part, with more events to be held at Omved.
The event focused on the eight areas of the ‘chefs’ manifesto’ – actions that chefs can take to support the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goal 2 (SDG2), to end hunger, improve nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture by 2030.
The manifesto has been written following consultations with more than 130 chefs from 38 countries and provides clear, practical advice on promoting equal opportunities and training in the workplace, as well as manage water usage to cut costs. The UK movement is being led by the World Food Programme’s SDG2 advocacy hub coordinator Paul Newnham.
“This is just the beginning, but we need people on board to take it into their own kitchens and do it themselves and organise events,” said Nicholson, who urged chefs to sign up on the website and to the manifesto.
Photo: Sabrina Dallot-Seguro, Forest