Future-proofing our food and the way we think about eating was the focus of an event at Airfield Estate today.
The National Dairy Council hosted the Sustainable Kitchen event for Irish chef Anna Haugh, whose restaurant – Myrtle, in London – has been highly praised since it opened in 2019.
The way that the culinary industry is expected to change in the next few decades was a hot topic for the professionals present.
They discussed what they can learn from the past and what to consider, moving into the future.
Haugh said, “I was raised to waste nothing and have always insisted this ethos continues in my kitchens. It’s not just a matter of saving money, but also being aware of repercussions on the planet.”
Sustainability and changing diets are driving key innovation in the food industry.
Due to key factors such as population growth, the effects of global warming, and inequality in access to food, a fundamental shift in how we think about food is necessary.
The term ‘sustainable diet’ is often misunderstood, as it applies to much more than climate change.
According to the Food and Agriculture Organization and WHO, sustainable, healthy diets should be nutritionally adequate, culturally acceptable and accessible, economically affordable, and environmentally protective.
Irish dairy scores well within these four pillars, providing high levels of nutrition while remaining both accessible and affordable.
Ireland’s grass-based system is also efficient, resulting in one of the lowest dairy carbon footprints internationally.
Part Of The Change
On the changing landscape, the director of education and research at Airfield Estate, Kirstie McAdoo, said, “The most sustainable food we can eat respects natural resources, such as soil and biodiversity, and comes from local farmers and suppliers.”
Conor Spacey, culinary director of FoodSpace Ireland, said, “We are all very aware that our current food system is broken. From food waste to food accessibility, there is a huge divide across the globe.”
Spacey continued, “The future of our food will change, and, as consumers, we need to be part of the change and really understand the effects our choices can make to the planet, livelihoods, and ourselves.”