Several Indian chefs have started feeling the urge to make a conscious effort to promote local produce and support small-scale farmers and do their bit to put up a resistance against climate change.
The trend for urban dwellers to include farm-fresh produce, seasonal fruits and vegetables on our regular diet might have started from the shelves of Nature’s Basket or Foodhall, but for several top chefs working with established restaurants in the country, sourcing chemical-free ingredients is only one side to a whole new ballgame.
No longer are they only concerned about sourcing chemical-free produce, but they are now keener on their share of responsibility towards the environment and are eager to promote the idea of sustainability as well as health. Sustainability in the kitchen can be viewed as a broader term, which isn’t restricted to a few ‘organic’ food items, which are in most parts of the country, imported from elsewhere. These chefs, the changemakers in the culinary game, are seeking to engage in fruitful business with local communities and farmers.
What the fuss?
The Indian soil has been exposed enough to severe chemical treatments since the Green Revolution. Technically, except for a few parts in the North East, it is actually not possible to produce certified organic crops. What we get in most metro cities are near to ‘chemical-free’, which are not fully organic. However, the point is that most of the time, to fulfill the demands of establishments, farmers tend to grow non-native and non-seasonal crops and vegetables to survive in the business. What has to change is the chefs’ attitude who shouldn’t give in to these demands and take a stand as responsible citizens towards a greener, more sustainable community.