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Training for Pacific's top chefs

Ropate Valemei
Tuesday, August 18, 2015

ABOUT 20 chefs representing Pacific restaurants, hotels, resorts and cookery institutions from around the region were part of a chef training in Nadi recently.

The event had a long-term objective to promote the use and consumption of local produce and to strengthen the livelihoods of farmers, producers, fishers and local business operators.

The event was organised by the University of the South Pacific's (USP) school of tourism and hospitality management in collaboration with the South Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO) and the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC).

The third Pacific culinary training workshop culminated along with the first globalising Pacific agri-food through tourism workshops as part of the recent community agri-tourism week.

Senior lecturer Dr Dawn Gibson said the workshops taught chefs to use local food and prepare contemporary Pacific dishes, which played an important role in promoting modern Pacific cuisine, reducing imports, increasing links to local agriculture and developing cultural food experiences within the region.

Co-ordinator of the hotel management program Greg Cornwall said the school of tourism and hospitality management had focused on ensuring that the hospitality industries had a clear co-operative relationship with the agricultural and fisheries industries.

"This is vital to the development of the Pacific Island countries, especially in having a clear agenda that supports national development," Mr Cornwall said in a statement.

School head professor Marcus Stephenson said the presentation was about ways in which capacity building could take place in the region, adding USP had significant learning resources and expertise knowledge in agriculture, fisheries, tourism and hospitality.

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