UNISG Voices

MAD food festival 2012

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 Pictures by Maria L. Cobo

When we go to a circus tent, we look for entertainment, for a show. In this case, coming into a circus tent was going to MAD2, which means “food “ in the Danish language and was the second edition of the food symposium held by René Redzepi and his team in Copenhagen.

After biking through the city, or by shuttle boat, the people arrived at the amazing Circus tent of MAD2- 2012.

The first great impression is to meet René Redzepi and his crew shaking hands and welcoming each person who was part of the audience and the speakers. There were journalists, food lovers, farmers, scientists, academics, bloggers, chefs, writers, students, historians, and and and… who came here from all around the world to attend the symposium that had this year as its theme “Appetite”, and everything that implicates. The idea to bring such a community together started last year with MAD1 2011 and the theme “vegetation” to find a way to communicate, create and deliver a responsible and aware message of what food means.

I could really say that I haven´t seen such an easy going “food event” until now. This showed me how easy it could be when the right people come together at the right time in the right place. The results of the symposium are very positive.

Having such a great mix of people, like Roderick Sloan, Noma’s sea urchin harvester from Norway/Scotland who lives in the Artic Circle on the coast of northern Norway and lives for fishing by hand; Enrique Olvera of Pujol in Mexico City who uses bananas and other produts to give back the value of this fruits and redefine Mexican gastronomy, how important is tradition and the exchange that people have when eating out; Andrea Pieroni, our Botanic Professor, who brought a message of how important is for people and nature to be together – “We are all one”; Leif Sørensen, chef from the Faroe Islands who explained how passion can push a person to create something in a place far away, where people did not identify with the things they have; Shinichiro Takagi, a chef from Japan gave us a message of care from the likes of others before introducing his way of cooking from the Japanese cuisine of his region in Japan´s western coast. A very inspiring person and only female speaker named Chido Govera, activist, farmer and writer from Zimbabwe who brings the message of hard work and belief in countries where everything could be possible; Massimo Montanari, our History of Food professor at the UNISG, yes we have a lot to learn from our forefathers, and we should apply this knowledge “a dish as a masterpiece that can be complete with a guest”. Andrea Petrini, a journalist based in France brought appetite and memories together, an expression through music; Ferran Adria, who was very critical of himself and the “new and old chefs in the world”, the world crisis of food and the huge compromise and responsibility that chefs and we all have for the next years; “creativity can be hard on people”- “it has no compassion for you”; Massimo Bottura showed a horror movie about how far would a Italian mother go to show off that she makes the best tortellini, and many other speakers.

Other things that make MAD so special: it makes each of us feel responsible for the future of food, it creates an interesting event where everyone was involved, and it finds the inspiration to continue working for better food and world.

With smørrebrød, fresh carrots, green strawberries, Danish beverages and ice cream, after two days I am looking forward to MAD3 which will take place in August 2013 where the theme will be “guts” – ingredients and courage – with the chef, curator and partner David Chang and his magazine Lucky Peach.

More information and videos will be soon online under: http://madfood.co/Mad-2012.html

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