José Andrés and chefs from around the world met in Phnom Penh, Cambodia, this week to raise awareness about harmful and inefficient cooking practices at the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves’ Clean Cooking Forum.
The group of chefs assembled with the Alliance, a partner of the State Department’s global initiative, at their biennial gathering to promote cleaner and safer cooking practices. Studies published in December by the Global Burden of Disease defined household air pollution as the fourth greatest health risk worldwide.
As the Alliance’s culinary ambassador, Andrés, along with his international colleagues, hopes to use his prominent position in the culinary industry to educate cooks on the harms of unsafe cooking and to develop cleaner practices that are better for health and for the environment. Andrés was joined by chefs from India, Cambodia, and Kenya at the forum in the hope of making their efforts known worldwide.
"As chefs, we feed the few, but we have the know-how and the commitment to help feed the many in safer, more sustainable ways," said Andrés. "What we have seen first-hand and discovered about household air pollution from cooking’s impact on people and the planet has driven us to take action and say, without hesitation, that 'cooking shouldn’t kill.'"
Because of the group’s international appeal, they’ll each be making specific efforts to target the issues surrounding their country’s cooking practices, such as cooking with a chulha stove in India and Kenya’s dependency on cooking with wood and other harmful solid fuels.
Anne Dolce is the Cook editor at The Daily Meal. Follow her on Twitter @anniecdolce