Two Welsh chefs have gained global recognition by being invited to serve on World Association of Chefs Societies’ Committees.
Culinary Association of Wales (CAW) president Arwyn Watkins will serve on the Feed the Planet and Sustainability Committee for three years.
Sally Owens, a cake decoration and patisserie lecturer at Coleg Llandrillo, Rhos-on-Sea, has been invited to become a special advisor to the Global Pastry Chef Challenge on the Culinary Competition Committee.
Mr Watkins is keen to embed sustainability into mainstream education and work-based training programmes, not only for chefs but the general public also, as food waste is now a major issue.
Worldchefs has developed a seven-part programme for the foodservice industry focusing on issues surrounding sustainability on a global, regional, local and personal level.
Worldchefs believes that sustainability is a global phenomenon that threatens lives and the planet and says the solution rests with personal decisions made by individuals, which can make all the difference when collectively considered.
The programme’s curriculum, which is divided into topics on food, energy, water and waste, has been designed for culinary schools across the globe. However, Mr Watkins believes the programme, which forms the basis of study for professional chefs and chef organisations, could have wider benefits by being embedded into mainstream education and training programmes, as food waste and sustainability are issues that affect everybody.
“I’m really excited about my appointment to this important Worldchefs committee,” he said. “Sustainability is an enormous issue affecting not only chefs when planning and designing menus and dishes, but mothers and fathers also. The challenge is how do we embed sustainability into mainstream education and training programmes?
“It’s an issue that makes us all think about the future, whether it’s food waste, utilising the resources available to us or food security.”
The committee’s remit also includes Worldchefs Without Borders, a global humanitarian aid initiative that connects chefs committed to providing education and resources to those in need and afflicted by natural disasters.
International Chefs Day on October 20 every year also comes under the committee’s control. Last year, chefs affiliated to 103 member organisations around the world took part in this special day by hosting workshops and activities for thousands of children.
Mrs Owens is a long-standing member and former treasurer and North Wales Region chairman of the CAW. She represented the Culinary Team Wales for many years, is chairman of judges at Cake International and organises Cake Cymru at the Welsh International Culinary Championships, held at Coleg Llandrillo every February.
In 2011, she made an impressive wedding cake for the CAW to celebrate the marriage of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge who donated it to homeless charity Centrepoint.
The Global Chefs Challenge brings together the world’s best chefs meet to compete for coveted titles. Competitions are held bi-annually in three different categories, Global Chefs, Global Pastry Chefs and Young Chefs Challenge (Hans Bueschkens for chefs aged 25 and under). A competitor must be selected by their home nation go through to a regional semi-final which leads to the world final at Worldchefs Congress in Kuala Lumpur in July, 2018.
Previous competition finals have seen pastry chefs produce a chocolate showpiece more than 60cm tall, six identical desserts and a gateau in a set theme within 8.5 hours.
“It’s a great honour to be invited to become a special advisor to the Global Pastry Chef Challenge on the Worldchefs Competition Committee and I look forward to serving and representing Wales,” she said.