Dear friends, colleagues and chefs,
Warmest greetings to all of you on behalf of the Hong Kong Chefs Association
On behalf of the Hong Kong Chefs Association, its committee and all members, we would like to Congratulate the TEAM (Hong Kong Culinary National Team) to the roaring success in winning "GOLD MEDAL" in the Gourmet Team Challenge during the recent held 2012 FHA Culinary Competition, Singapore and through their tremendous achievement in winning a total of 8 Gold Medals during the recent held culinary competition in conjunction with WACS Global Forum in Daejeon City, South Korea.
The recent held competition in the Categories of “Restaurant of the Nations, Hans Bueschkens Junior Final Challenge and Global Competition” won acclaimed responds. Through TEAM Spirit, our individual chef members have gained fundamental knowledge and skills and have focused on achieving a common objective in a very short time with remarkable result, on an international stage. Their contribution and success have made yet history again and placed Hong Kong in par with any other city on the culinary edge in showcasing quality, innovation, freshness and passion. Their mentors are of equal important and without them, the level of learning and archiving is unbalanced. Our sincere thanks, appreciation and thoughts are herewith highly expressed to our individual supporters, who have followed us for many years and supported us as they have strongly believed in our association and its portfolio. Without them, we are not able to compete and gain this achievement. Furthermore, we would like to congratulate all participants on their culinary achievements during the acclaimed competition.
Brief Information of the WACS 2012 Global Forum
During the WACS Global Forum which I attended, we saw a growth of attendance from 73 nations. Forums, workshops and presentations with key-note speakers Chef Anton Mosimann “Cook to Chef to Businessman”; Rick Moonen “How to Feed the Nation; Sustainability-Aqua Culture-Solution or Problems; educational workshops with Chef John Clancy and Chef Michael Basket in regards to “A new Age for Culinary Education; Chef Gert Klötzke “Preparing for Culinary Olympics Competition” and Chef Johann Lafer “A life for a Good Taste” as well as many others where educational and of high interests.
A declaration on “How to feed the Planet with Creative Positive Changes” where developed and signed by Daejeon City Mayor Mr. Hong Chul Yim and WACS President Mr. Gissur Gudmunsson; with attending chefs endorsing their support.
The Young Chef Forums themed under “We are Culinary Stars” with various key speakers like Chef Anton Mosimann, a video conference with Dr. Billy Gallagar and cooking demonstration classes by young chefs ambassadors where held throughout the week with an introduction to new member countries. A remarkable effort to promote, motivate, communicate, share and give mentorship to our next generation of chefs where highlighted through discussion forums to strengthen the passion and communication ability towards the next generation.
A night of recognition with award presentation of Honorary Membership; Humanitarian; Educational; Achievement and Outstanding Support towards the betterment of the WACS Family where presented during the opening cocktail reception. We would like to congratulate Chef Rudolf Muller on his WACS Honorary Membership award as well as all other recipients for the continuous effort, mentorship, devotions and humanitarian aid they have rendered towards not only the WACS family but to individual members of the global society.
In closing, we have witnessed the re-election of Mr. Gissur Gudmunsson as WACS President for his second term and have identified Greece as the host for the WACS Global Forum in 2016. Most important, we all have med friends, made new friends, explored new opportunities discuss upcoming trends in regards to all aspects of life and explored ways on improving communications, mentoring our next generation of chefs and competed in a friendly environment and have made history in being noted in the Guinness Book of Records. Our sincere thanks to the entire organization team and WACS
“A Taste of Spain”
Culinary training to chef students of HITDC with 2 starred Michelin Chef
With Spanish cuisine being one of the gastronomies at the forefront of the international food scene, the Hospitality Industry Training and Development Centre, with the support of Mr. David Ferrán, Director of The Spanish Tourist Office for the South of China, Hong-Kong and Macau, Spanish Consulate General in Guangzhou
invited Dani Garcia, a Spanish 2 starred Michelin Chef, winner of the National Gastronomy Prize by the Royal Academy of Gastronomy in Spain to Hong Kong prior to his attendance at the World Gourmet Summit in Singapore.
Chef Dani Garcia trained under the famed Martín Berasategui where he quickly became one of the leading stars in the Spanish culinary scene. Since then, he has won multiple prestigious awards; the most recent being awarded the second Michelin star for Calima Restaurant where he is the head chef and being granted the Gold Medal of Andalusia by the regional government of Andalusia. Currently the culinary ambassador of Marbella, Chef Dani is the icon for new Andalusia’s cuisine. His personal culinary concept “Cocinacontradicion” (classic flavours and contemporary preparations) that he offers in Calima are exciting, intelligent and innovative, noted for its fresh ingredients and impeccable preparation.
Over a period of seven days, over 45 chef trainees of the western food preparation courses where able to work alongside Chef Dani and his assistance Chef Santiago and Chef Isac; in preparing food commodities for dinners and cocktail receptions to over 320 guests.
Detail analysis of studying the purchased food commodities, setting creatively aspects without overpowering the core ingredient and the application of transition in preparing and its application of cooking methods where core elements of the daily working progress.
Highlights included the extraordinary techniques in reinstructing food commodities while leaving its essence intact. Through the chief exponent, its techniques and application of cooking in liquid nitrogen, which Chef Dani developed in conjunction with specialist scientists to the point he achieved astounding results where individual demonstrated to chef trainees.
Chef trainees quickly understood that the rare visit of such acclaimed chef like Dani Garcias and the ability to work alongside was for them a flight towards a cuisine of the present and the future, where they explored the techniques of vast creativity abilities by re-inventing techniques and dishes making use of the latest developments in food technology.
An in-depth hands-on training demonstration and seminar conducted by Chef Dani Garcia to chef trainees of Western and Chinese food preparation courses took place were attending chef trainees explored an in-depth rediscovering the textures of products in the cooking fields of heat and cold. Understanding the concept of such nature, chef trainees were advised to respect textures based on common cooking methods, acquire the knowledge and collect experience to assume respect to simplicity and creativity. On behalf of the management, we would like to express our sincere thanks and appreciation to the Spanish Tourist Office for the South of China, Hong-Kong and Macau, Spanish Consulate General in Guangzhou in their support towards the culinary training to chef trainees of our centre.
Sustainability Awareness with Chef Trainees of HITDC
“What A Waste” are the headlines in our major Hong Kong Newspapers recently as it was revealed that major supermarkets dump 87 tons of food a Day. Surprised? Not really…. We all know to good who is to be blamed? Do We?
Each of us graves for more choice, better quality, more variety and more market trends that we stock-up our supermarkets with products we hardly can consume, despite the new labeling laws, expiring days and best-before laws. Alarming news not really noticed by anyone? Sustainability-where does it starts? We ask our self’s to share our part, have you done yours? Meanwhile, we spend more time looking for landfills rather trying to reduce our waste.
Sustainability means providing a balanced lifestyle for all human beings within our natural environment. The current over-consumption of resources and the emphasis on a consumer lifestyle will have to stop to allow the world to be better able to sustain life for a long time into the future. People who live traditional and simple lifestyles generally use very little of the Earth´s resources. They have the wisdom to allow nature to regenerate so as to provide its gifts repeatedly into the far future. In so-called "modern cities" like Hong Kong where people have plenty of money, we tend to be very wasteful with an ingrained habit of throwing things away and always wanting new things. There is much we can do in our daily life to lessen our ecological footprint without losing our quality of life.
Chef trainees of HITDC took the initiation to visit Kadoori Farm, a Sustainability Awareness Program situated at the outskirts of Kowloon- Hong Kong. Education through the support of eating local, we further improve and care about carbon emissions and global warming, don´t buy food that has traveled hundreds or thousands of kilometers by airplane, ship or lorry to get to you.
Training objectives to our students covered aspect such as caring about open spaces; buying food that is grown on small local farms will help keep our countryside and open spaces green as well as caring about stopping urban sprawl, buying from local producers rather than from big supermarkets. If we care about forests, wild places, biodiversity, and endangered species, you should know that a leading cause of deforestation is the raising of livestock and their feedstuff. Caring about clean water and soil, we should reduce to buy meat of animals raised on crowded factory farms. Overall, sustainability living through conservation methods have brought a wider prospect to our chef trainees to review carbon footprints, make use of water filtering purifications, irrigation water, waste recovery, composting, seeding techniques, planting methods and the wider use of natural ventilation and lighting, and the gradual replacement of old appliances with energy-efficient models.
So, in the end…did we do our part? Where do we start? Where do we end-up? A small step is better than none, certainly a long way to go; - our trainees realized and have gained further information on how to take part, how to promote, how to be aware, how to contribute, how to share…….but it really does take a long way with unity of each members of our society.
Seafood Sustainability Awareness Luncheon and Seminar
with Members of the HKCA and WWF Hong Kong
Chef Members of the HKCA attended a “Sustainability Seafood Luncheon and Seminar” which was co-organized by WWF Hong Kong and Worldwide Seafood Ltd. in aspects of the seafood sustainability awareness and its crisis as polls show a growing number of seafood consumers are thinking more carefully about how to make more sustainable choices, using sustainable seafood guides provided by environmental groups and asking seafood retailers for better labeling detailing where and how seafood is harvested. The luncheon was held at the Jumbo Kingdom Floating Restaurant-Aberdeen and strongly supported with our largest local Sustainability Seafood Supplier Worldwide Seafood at their company headquarters in Hong Kong.
Dr. Allen To of WWF Hong Kong highlighted that the global consumption of fish has hit record levels, and the oceans are paying the price as popular food species are threatened with extinction by overfishing and fishing-driven habitat loss. Some believe aquaculture — fish farming — may be the answer to supplying global demand for one of the world’s healthiest protein source without devastating the ocean. Proponents of aquaculture argue that an increase in fish farming will both relieve pressure on wild fish populations and prevent damaging fishing methods like bottom trawling from destroying wild ocean habitats. But in practice, large scale fish farms have often been shown to put ocean wildlife at risk — by polluting the water with concentrated areas of fish waste, by encouraging the proliferation, through overcrowding of diseases that can later spread to wild populations of fish and by competing with wild fish populations for resources — farmed fish are generally fed fish meal, which is made from the same species of prey fish that predatory fish and sharks hunt in the wild. Through ongoing discussions, proposals and ways how to promote the impact of awareness, we have overwhelmingly come to the conclusion to further support the call by WWF to adhere to the guidelines of sustainable seafood sourcing with available sustainable seafood suppliers and to further establish a link with government officials in regards to food regulations, legislations and promotions with the corporation of WWF and chefs throughout Hong Kong. Surely, we believe that education to the nation is of high priority and we have been informed that the message has been acknowledged by the government education department bureau as well as the food and environmentally hygiene department.
We would like to sincerely thank Dr. Allen To, Conservation Officer, Marine of WWF Hong Kong and Miss Vivien Lee, Managing Director of Worldwide Seafood Ltd. For their support and educational advise and shared information.
In closing, I would like to remind all that we steel have places vacant here at HITDC in regards to the 2012 German Pastry Trade Test System which will be held on October 2012 and vacant places in regards to the 2012 Worldskills Hong Kong Competition for in-service professional chefs under the age of 21. Your enrollment, participating and promoting these events to your fellow co-workers is important in your role as a professional chef.
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From all of us here in Hong Kong, all the very best and “Happy Cooking”