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Healthy Not Hungry in London

Chefs Cook Up Unique Dinner

Story by World Food Programme February 6th, 2017

Story by Jenny Wilson, Photos by Celine Marchbank & Andrew Davies

Chefs all over the world rose to the challenge of supporting the Healthy Not Hungry campaign in a series of dinners in global capitals. In London, the World Food Programme teamed up with executive chefs Arthur Potts Dawson, Tim Maddams and Atul Kochhar to cook a Healthy not Hungry dinner.

The campaign is an initiative focused on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal 2 – Zero Hunger. By following the 5 steps to Zero Hunger, the World Food Programme believes it can reach this goal by 2030.

Volunteers working together

The London event brought together high-profile influencers and opinion makers from NGOs, the private sector and food journalism, for a public conversation about Zero Hunger.

Adding to the challenge, the World Food Programme set out to deliver the dinner at zero cost. A monumental response from a great array of volunteers, suppliers and collaborators made this possible. The menu was created entirely from ingredients donated by 20 suppliers, and on the day itself over 60 volunteers worked together and hosted the event.

Three volunteers prepare fresh produce for the London dinner. Photo: WFP/Celine Marchbank

Creating menus that provide sufficient calories and nutrients and use local, sustainable ingredients, is a central challenge in the fight for a Healthy Not Hungry world. Thanks to the incredible efforts of the chefs, working alongside nutritionists, herbalists and doctors, the Healthy Not Hungry London menu achieved all this.

Chef Arthur Potts Dawson believes that “after a good meal you wake up the next morning feeling empowered and full of energy”. If we can educate people around the world about the importance of this and how to do it, we are one step closer to achieving Zero Hunger by 2030.

Chef Arthur Potts Dawson preparing fresh and local ingredients. Photo: WFP/Celine Marchbank
Arthur Potts Dawson applies some finishing touches. Photo: WFP/Celine Marchbank

Using local, seasonal and sustainable ingredients is an essential part of supporting a Healthy Not Hungry world. The London dinner menu did this by selecting only seasonal produce and minimizing waste. Carrots were picked that very morning just outside London. Chutney was made from fruit and vegetables that would otherwise have been rejected by the market on aesthetic grounds.

The first course made up of raw, nutritious ingredients including carrot, dandelion and verbena salad. Photo: WFP/Celine Marchbank

Many believe that to live sustainably we should redefine the meat industry, dramatically reducing our consumption of meat or even switching to completely vegan diets.

Produce picked and donated that very day. Photo: WFP/Celine Marchbank

However, chef Tim Maddams showed how meat products can be used sustainably – by preparing a dish of wood pigeon, an agricultural pest that feeds off the crops grown by British farmers. Two of the crops most susceptible to pigeon damage – toasted barley and sprouted peas – were also served.

Chef Tim Maddams with two wood pigeons. Photo: WFP/Andrew Davies

The dinner brought together a diverse group of people linked by their interest in food and different roles as advocates for Zero Hunger. This was a demonstration of the support behind the Healthy Not Hungry campaign and a testimony to the power available to achieve Zero Hunger by 2030.

Artists capture discussions among guest being had by the guests, about reaching the goal of Zero Hunger. Photo: WFP/Celine Marchbank

See here for more on the Healthy Not Hungry campaign