Chefs Manifesto Case Studies

The Case Studies are designed to highlight the themes of biodiversity: utilising ingredients through cooking, understanding flavour profiles, plant-based eating and cooking, and reducing our water consumption in the kitchen. 

Each case study includes calls to action from Chefs in the Chefs network, extracts from key reports, graphic data, and future challenges.

Case Study 1: The Protection of biodiversity

 

Dietary diversity
Dietary Diversity- Case Study 1 (p.1)

Chefs have a direct connection  to biodiversity by sourcing their ingredients locally. Through promoting the use of local ingredients and supporting small holder farmers, this supports sustainable food systems. A key tenet of the Chefs Manifesto is through the connection Chefs have to their food we can understand and improve our links to agriculture, biodiversity and ecosystems, directly affecting health on the plate. 

 

Drawing on The Future 50 Foods we can reduce strain on our food systems by increasing the diversity of food crops we use. Currenly, '75% of the world's food comes from just 12 plant and five animal species'. 

The Chefs included are Chef Pierre Thiam, highlighting the importance of educating the customer about food, and Chef Pinky Maruping on creating the demand for crop diversity. Dr. Fabrice DeClerck PhD (Science Director, EAT/ Stockholm Resilience Centre) highlights the need to redefine current agricultural practices.

Case Study 2: Eat the Whole Plant 

Chefs demonstrate how we can utilise the whole plant,

Food waste
Food waste- Case Study 2 (p.2)

regenerating ingredients through cooking to prevent them going to landfill.

The Knorr Future 50 Foods report evidences how we can reduce food waste through using innovative ingredients such as pumpkin leaves, beet leaves and lever seaweed.

Chefs call for action to "Add diversity to your list of ingredients", says Chef Anahita Dhondy. Eating from the "whole farm" and "Honoring what a farm needs to grow in your local landscape" is also vital, says Chef Tom Hunt.

Case Study 3: Bitter Foods 

Flavours are related to certain food groups and nutrients. This case study is about understanding the flavour profiles that make up the human palate and the connection between eating plant-based wild foods and supporting a sustainable and diverse diet. 

Bitter But Nice- aligning flavours to nutrients
Bitter But Nice- aligning flavours to nutrients; Case Study 3 (p.1)

 

Aligning flavours to nutrients can lead to healthier digestion and a greater understanding of our food system. Plants have "become specialised in developing chemicals to survive pests, herbivores, drought", says Dr. Fabrice DeClerck PhD. 

An example of the content included: flavours are related to certain food groups and nutrients: our bitter receptors are inactive due to our heavy grain and meat focused diets. Aligning flavours to nutrients can lead to healthier digestion.

Case Study 4: Plant-Based Eating and Cooking 

Building on the previous three case studies, a more plant-based diet is less resource intensive and the higher up the food chain we eat, the more resources we consume. The consumer drives the character of a plate, using Knorr's plant-based 'Future 50 Foods' is less resource intensive, and celebrates locality.

Plant-based graphic
Plant-based graphic, case study 4 (p.2)

 

Two challenges are "reviving the popularity and attractiveness of common ingredients", says Chef Megha Kholi, and considering the "location" of our plant-based cooking, says Chef Chantelle Nicholso.

 

 

Case Study 5: Foods grown with less water

In order to dramatically reduce our water consumption in food and agriculture as the climate crisis worsens, we can create a more sustainable kitchen by using nutritious plants that require little or no additional irrigation water. 

We cannot continue only depending on a "few crops globally for energy" says Dr. Paul Wilkins from The Millenium Seed Bank Parternship (MSB).

Complimenting the Chefs Manifesto network, the case studies all include actions on sustainable development tied to the UN SDGs through the Chefs Manifesto community.