World observes 18 June as Sustainable Gastronomy Day every year. Unlike most observances where we at least have a clue about the topic surrounding that observance, sustainable gastronomy may turn out to be an alien term for most. So let’s first understand – what really gastronomy and sustainable gastronomy means.
What is Sustainable Gastronomy?
Gastronomy is a form of science related to the art of food preparation. It deals with the relationship between food and culture. Sustainable gastronomy, thus, deals with cuisine from a very different perspective. It takes into account questions like, what are the sources of the ingredients? What is the method of food production? How food enters the market? The field of sustainable gastronomy advocates for efficient, innovative, and technological ingredients.
According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) sustainable gastronomy means cuisine that takes into account where the ingredients are from, how the food is grown and how it gets to our markets and eventually to our plates.
Objectives of Sustainable Gastronomy Day
Acknowledgement of cultural expression related to the natural and cultural diversity of the world was one of the main objectives behind the establishment of this observance. Sustainable Gastronomy Day also raises awareness about the importance of the role that sustainable gastronomy.
Cultures and Civilizations plays a critical role in enabling sustainable development. Thus, the observance reiterates the importance of their roles as contributors.
History of Sustainable Gastronomy Day
Sustainable Gastronomy Day has been officially recognized by the United Nations. In December 2016, the United Nations General Assembly passed a resolution proclaiming 18 June as the World Sustainable Gastronomy Day. Accordingly, the world observed the day officially for the first time on 18 June 2017.
Importance of Sustainable Gastronomy Day
Sustainable gastronomy is not a stand-alone field. It is interlinked with three dimensions of sustainable development. Thus, it has the potential to play an important and critical role in meeting a combination of targets of Sustainable Development Goals at one go.
From agricultural development to food security, and from nutrition to biodiversity conservation — the field of sustainable gastronomy has a lot to offer.
How can you support?
Sustainable gastronomy encourages going local. Oh yes, you don’t have to do anything out of this world to support sustainable gastronomy. You just have to use and appreciate the food resources near you in the most efficient way. You’ll do your job if you remember the following four points:
- Provide support to the local farmers by opting for local food markets.
- Explore local cuisines whenever you travel.
- Emphasize on keeping your culinary traditions alive.
- Avoid food wastage.
That is all! In today’s time when COVID-19 pandemic has adversely affected the entire food supply chain, the role of sustainable gastronomy becomes even more relevant. We must utilize this time as an opportunity to appreciate our traditions as well as practice sustainable living!