-Megavarshini S G
Indian Federation of Culinary Associations (IFCA) has organized a virtual conference where the entire board of IFCA presented their view points on the current pandemic in India. The session was targetted for both professional and aspiring chefs. IFCA has successfully completed 20 years in the Hotel industry and has conducted close to 60 events and a number of culinary challenges for chefs all over the world. It was more of a virtual discussion and each and every member of the association expressed their viewpoints on the COVID 19 and the crisis their industry is facing as of now.
Here are the ten key takeaways from the webinar:
(1) Chefs are planning to concentrate more on quality and nutrition. They are planning to keep the elements in the plate simple and innovative and to not compromise on the freshness of the food.
(2) IFCA felt that the pool of both skilled and unskilled labourers will be increased and hence there will be no crisis for manpower once they bounce back.
(3) There were also discussions to make modifications like smaller tables for people to dine, paperless bill, digital payment links in order to avoid human contact, and at the same time people need not compromise on the restaurant way of life after the COVID 19 crises.
(4) Since there may be a shortage of ingredients, Chefs had been advised to minimize the ingredients list and to move on to a more traditional way of cooking with proper hygiene practices
(5) IFCA has planned to organize more webinars, e quizzes to keep people connected and chefs engaged. It strongly believes that sharing knowledge and being interactive helps people and aspiring young chefs to grow.
(6) One speaker said the importance of being updated and chefs were asked to try cooking while being at home too.
(7) There was a slew of books given as a reference for chefs to try reading and make this lockdown productive.
(8) IFCA strongly believes that people do miss the restaurant food and the crowd will turn back once they feel safe and hygienic. So, giving them the most exotic dishes is important and the chefs have to work for the same.
(9) The speakers also spoke about how food safety will take the center stage as health is going to be a major concern for most people. Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) initiatives, norms, food handling, and safety precautions in kitchen and service areas.
(10) Discussions on rescuing their industry and measures to be put forth to FSSAI was addressed.