If chefs back sustainable food, consumers will follow, writes Lucky Peach founder Chris Ying
A lot of people who cook food – and even more who write about it – have asked themselves at some point what the hell they’re doing. Particularly recently, as deeply entrenched institutional inequalities and biases are brought to light – not only in food but across numerous industries – a nagging question presents itself: am I doing something meaningful with my life?
These panicky moments vary in severity. Some are passing irritations that strike as we stand at the sink peeling a bucket of carrots, or while staring blankly at white pixels on a screen trying to come up with yet another word for “delicious”. Other times, it feels existential. More than a few people have left successful restaurant careers to pursue something they find more consequential. But the narrative you hear more frequently is about the person who leaves their desk job to work with something more tangible – namely food.
Designer has been doing ethical fashion since 2001 – finally the rest of the world is catching up
The invitation for Stella McCartney’s fashion show in Paris came in a glossy pouch with “I am 100% compostable (and so are you!)” printed on it. Inside was a freebie with purpose: a pair of yellow socks made from 85% upcycled yarn using no water, chemicals, dyes or pesticides.
In a socially conscious climate in which more and more fashion brands are pledging their commitment to sustainability, such details matter. But McCartney has been exploring ethical fashion since she set up in 2001, when it seemed like an eccentricity – or even a nuisance – to many in the wider industry.
Colombia’s farmers can hope again after bloody decades of civil war – but they’re not relying on politicians to help them
Don José Manuel Suarez has seen some things. Father of seven and grandfather of 15, his 80 years have been spent farming a patch of land that has also been a battleground in the longest civil war in modern history. At an outdoor meeting of a co-operative of banana farmers in Ciénaga, near the northern Caribbean coast of Colombia, Don José Manuel sits in one shady corner of a clearing, patiently waiting his turn to speak. The other men and women are his old friends and neighbours. The question I’ve asked them is this: what have been the worst of times, and what the best?
In the hot morning sun, among the creaking plants hung with clenched hands of green bananas, the answers to the first part of that question have come thick and fast.