What responsibilities do public institutions have in resisting the corporatization of food? Chef and activist Joshna Maharaj shares the trials, the quirks and the successes of a one-year project to overhaul a Toronto hospital’s food system, taking it from frozen pre-packaged foods to fresh, local fare.
The Symposium paper given by Joshna Maharaj was delivered at the 2017 Symposium on Landscape. The proceedings from this Symposium are available here from Prospect Books. All Symposium papers are available to download free on Google Books three years after publication. You can find papers from 1981 – 2015 here.
Joshna Maharaj is a chef, a two-time TEDx speaker, and activist who wants to help everyone have a better relationship with their food. She believes strongly in the power of chefs and social gastronomy to bring values of hospitality, sustainability, and social justice to the table to nourish people and communities. Recently, Joshna has been working with hospitals and universities in Toronto to build new models for institutional food procurement, production and service. She is currently working on a book to capture the lessons and experience and create a shareable blueprint for changing institutional food systems around the globe. Take Back the Tray is a movement to reconnect food with health, wellness, education, and rehabilitation in public institutions around the globe. And it is a story about how a chef took on the institution and tried to make change.
Instagram: @takebackthetray, @joshnamaharaj