The Food Resistance

As somebody who has been involved in the hospitality industry for many years, I’ve been acutely aware of the food trends and preferences all along. Some I found very fun and exciting, others not so much.

I must say that to operate now is the most difficult ever. The industry is currently faced with an abundance of allergies, sensitivities, ethical demands, particular preferences and special diets to contend with on a per service basis, aside from producing good tasting food and service.

To make things even more complicated we are living in a time in the U.S. where food borne illnesses have grown by 300% in the last 20 years according to the CDC. Obviously this garners a significant amount of attention.

To top it all off, being sustainable and socially responsible has become very important. Establishments are trying to figure out how to compost, reduce energy consumption, buy local, offer Organic and Fair Trade products all without over extending themselves to please their customers. Throw in the GMO debate and other concerns and it only gets worse.

Gone are the days where eggs were just eggs. Now we have ultra pasteurized, humane, organic, free range, cage free, and “all natural” varieties that also come with just the whites.

Thanks to the Panera generation, the same could be said as it pertains to breads and coffee drinks to name a few!

I’m not complaining as I’m one of those guys with a special diet who loves what he does. I’m just expressing my observations over recent years.

However, I will admit that I’m concerned that artistic component will be lost. As making and serving quality food continues to grow more complicated, will the artists continue to come to the industry?

With the fast food and casual themes restaurants continuing to grow in popularity. Will there even be room for the artists?

Despite all this, there is a resistance. People fighting for the integrity of food, who will not go quietly despite all the obstacles. These folks care, show up day in and day out to share their joy for the artistic side of food.

Please encourage these artisans by showing up in their establishments whenever you can, they deserve the same kind of love that they put into their food. It will not be the same if we are gone.

Bon Appétit.