The 10th Chef Summit was organised by Indian Culinary Forum (ICF) on the occasion of India’s biggest culinary awards, the 19th Annual Chef Awards. The celebrations were part of International Chefs Day held on 14th October 2022 at Hotel Pride Plaza, Aerocity, New Delhi. Mr. K.B Kachru, Chairman Emeritus, and Principal Advisor, Radisson Hotel Group, South was the Chief Guest for the day-long summit. Renowned names from the Hospitality industry presented their points of view to the 300 participants as well young chefs and trainees of catering and hotel management institutes.
Commenting on the summit, Chef Davinder Kumar, President Indian Culinary Forum said, “the journey of learning can never be complete, and as you continue to explore and learn more, you will realize that there always remains a vacuum which can be filled by your hunger for knowledge and passion to grow. “An investment in knowledge pays the best interest!” Over the years, I have learned that knowledge is of no value unless you put it into practice. So, learn more and implement what you learn. Always consider the 5 factors which determine your success i.e. Attitude, Skill, Knowledge, Excellence, & Drive or Dream. It was the tenth edition of the summit, which witnessed the participation of the stalwarts of the Indian hospitality sector resulting in knowledge building and thought leadership. The Indian Culinary Forum keeping with its pursuit of excelling ended the tenth Chef Summit with the promise of coming back bigger and better next year.”
The theme of this year’s summit was ‘Imagining a Healthy Future’. The summit witnessed participation of aspiring chefs, hotel-management students and hospitality professionals from all over India, who discussed, debated and deliberated upon a lot of burning issues relating to the hospitality industry. The industry experts shared insights on Imagining a Healthy Future.
Adding his views, Chef Vivek Saggar, General Secretary of Indian Culinary Forum said, “Indian culinary forum has always strived to work for the young and talented chefs by giving them a platform to showcase their exceptional culinary skills. The chef summit also discusses important issues of the hospitality industry by the stalwarts who bring with them vast and rich experience. This year we had panel discussions on “Vision 2030- do we foresee a healthy future”, “The great hospitality talent hunt” and “There is more to food than we see on the plate”. The summit aims to impart young chefs and students with the knowledge on new trends, changes being witnessed and how to improvise in the sector in making the Indian Hospitality sector at par with International standards. There is a need of bringing innovative cooking labs and changes in curriculum are required to match the growing needs of people who have become very conscious of the food they eat.”
The day-long summit was phased over four sessions. The first session was on the topic, Vision 2030: Do we Foresee a Healthy Future. This session was Moderated by Mr Rajiv Gulshan – Dean, Le Cordon Bleu School of Hospitality & Tourism. The speakers in the session were industry veterans such as Dr Shikha Nehru Sharma – Founder & Managing Director, Nutriwel Health (India) Pvt Ltd, Chef Akshay Bhardwaj – Executive Chef, Andaz Aerocity, Mr Sanjay Sethi, Executive Director, Plant Based Foods Industry Association, Mr Joshua Leny – Student of Masters in Hospitality, Le Cordon Bleu School. The session highlighted the present trends of food, the ingredients used and cooking methods. The impact of restrictive diets like Ayurvedic and plant based deprive people of required nutrients.
The second session, The Great Hospitality Talent Hunt – Are we navigating well, was Moderated by Mr Sourish Bhattacharya, the speakers in the session were Chef Sameer Miglani, Managing Director HRM Solutions, Mr Rishabh Tandon – Director HR, IHG, New Delhi, Chanakyapuri, Mr Deep Bahadur Thapa – Student, BCIHMCT. Some of the key takeaways from the session were discussions on making the hospitality sector a preferred career choice for students by offering lucrative packages and resources for the well-being of the chefs. The new initiatives that hotel management institutes should bring in imparting culinary skills at par with international standards.
The third session, there is more to food than what you see on your plate. Striking that perfect balance between taste, cost and calories, was moderated by Chef Ashish Bhasin – Director F&B Service & Culinary, Leela Ambience Gurugram. The speakers of the session were veterans of the hospitality industry such as Prashant Kulkarni – Director F&B Operations – Hilton India, Mr Rocky Mohan – Founder & Mentor of Gourmet Passport and Director of Conran Media Pvt. Ltd., Chef Nitin Puri – Director Culinary India · Griffith Foods, Mr Himanshu Bhatt – GM, Marketing, Food Service India, Ms Shambhavi – Student, Le Cordon Bleu School. The session highlighted issues such as operating costs of hotels and restaurants, the cost of importing ingredients that leads to additional expenses. Balancing the cuisines by using locally grown that are fresh and healthy as compared to imported ones for offering the best cuisines to diners.
The fourth session was a special ICF Live Session, where Mr Rajiv Gulshan, Dean, Le Cordon Bleu School of Hospitality and Tourism, G D Goenka University interacted with celebrity Chefs Atul Kochar and Ajay Chopra. G D Goenka University was the knowledge partner for for the day-long summit.
The Indian Culinary Forum is India’s association of Professional chefs of India. It was formed in New Delhi in 1987 as an exclusive non-profit-making organization, dedicated solely to the advancement of the culinary art of India. The Forum’s objective is to act as a link, a platform and an instrument for the enhancement and overall development of the national community of chefs. The World Association of Cooks Societies is 110-nation fellowship comprising the world’s various professional chefs’ organization representing over 9 million professional chefs.