'Feed the world', 'help immigrants' and 'balance gender' – what top chefs are pledging for the future

Mark Sansom - 05/08/2019

In Singapore in June, 50 Best revealed a video montage comprising top chefs committing their restaurants to positive action in the year ahead. Watch what Massimo Bottura, Dominique Crenn, Andoni Luis Aduriz, Elena Arzak, Gaggan Anand and more have pledged to do in the next 12 months
A pledge runs deeper than a promise. With it comes a weight of responsibility that assumes action rather than words. As part of the Food Meets Future event by S.Pellegrino in Singapore and The World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards programme, 50 Best asked chefs from all over the world to make a positive pledge for the future on behalf of their restaurants.

We called and 50 chefs answered. They rushed to make all manner of constructive individual commitments, from fostering a better environment in their kitchens to reducing working hours for their staff, creating jobs for immigrant workers and using more ecological food systems – we were overwhelmed with the response.

Sustainablilty was hot on the lips of many chefs, such as Manu Buffara who pledged "not to waste anything. And submit 100% of organic matter to compost", and Corey Lee of Benu, who said that he would make his restaurant "carbon neutral, with zero footprint". Other chefs looked to their staff, such as Elena Reygadas of Rosetta, who says that she will "maintain a 50/50 gender balance" in her brigade. However, do watch out for the emotional committment Massimiliano Alajmo makes to his team at Alajmo in Italy, where he promises them "never violence; just hugs. Big hugs."

These pledges made up the ‘inclusivity’ pillar for the Food Meets Future by S.Pellegrino event, which also saw top chefs discuss ‘responsibility’, ‘talent’ and ‘inspiration’. Massimo Bottura, Anne-Sophie Pic, José Andrés, Garima Arora, Yannick Alléno and Janice Wong came together to speak about what each of these tenets means in their restaurants and how they are working for positive change. To find out more about the event on Monday, 24th June, read the article.

50 Best will be keeping in touch with the chefs to check on their progress and if they’ve been successful in achieving what they set out in their pledge. Watch this space.

Now watch the pledge video 2019 in full:

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