The Chefs' Manifesto Podcast – Season 1


Launched on 17 March 2020, the Chefs’ Manifesto Podcast is a resource for chefs to share stories of action on sustainable development tied to the UN SDGs through the Chefs' Manifesto community.

The first series is hosted by Chef Tom Hunt and features a total of 9 episodes, each covering one of the 8 thematic areas of the Chefs' Manifesto. The episodes consist of Chef-to-Chef conversations bookended with contributions, quotes and stories from relevant experts. 

CM Podcast

About the Anchor Host: Chef Tom Hunt (@ChefTomHunt)

London-based Chef Tom Hunt is an award-winning chef, food writer, climate change activist and author of Eating for Pleasure, People & Planet. Tom prioritises people and the environment within his work and believes in a world with a fair global food system where our actions benefit other people and nature. He works to protect biodiversity and promote equality by raising awareness about the issues affecting our food system whilst empowering people and businesses to act responsibly through his consultancy, collaborations, food writing, presenting and events. In response to the global food waste scandal, Tom has developed a holistic approach to food called “Root to Fruit Eating” that educates and enables everyone from home cooks to industry chefs to tackle climate change through the food they cook and eat. Tom also works as a food and sustainability writer for magazines and newspapers. He has a weekly food waste column in The Guardian and a column in Vegetarian Living, Foodism and Jellied Eel. Visit Chef Tom's new website here


Episode 1 – Introduction and Conversations with Experts (Release: 17 March)

episode 1

Paul Newnham (@paulnewnham)

Paul Newnham currently heads up the SDG2 Advocacy Hub as Director, an initiative bringing together NGOs, advocacy groups, civil society, the private sector and UN agencies to coordinate global campaigning and advocacy to achieve SDG 2. To this end, the Hub facilitates a network of 600+ chefs from 77 countries to support chef action on the SDGs. Paul has over 20 years’ experience in, and extensive knowledge of, the Not For Profit Sector having worked in National and Global roles with a focus on Campaigning, Youth Mobilisation, Advocacy, Marketing and Communication. Through inspirational and evocative leadership, Paul is able to enthuse and motivate others, achieving goals beyond expectation. 

Gerda Verburg (@GerdaVerburg)

Since August 2016, Gerda Verburg (The Netherlands) has served as UN Assistant Secretary-General and Coordinator of the Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Movement, working with the 60 country governments that lead the SUN Movement, united with UN agencies, civil society, business and donors, in a common mission to defeat malnutrition in all its forms. She was appointed by the UN Secretary-General based on her extensive experience in politics and international cooperation. In 2008, following her appointment the previous year as Minister of Agriculture, Nature and Food Quality of the Netherlands, Ms Verburg was elected as Chair of the UN Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD 17). From 2011, she served as Permanent Representative of the Netherlands to the United Nations Rome- based agencies (FAO, IFAD and WFP). In 2013, she was elected as Chair of the UN Committee on World Food Security (CFS), and in 2014 she served as Chair of the Agenda Council for Food and Nutrition of the World Economic Forum (WEF).

Theo De Jager (@TheoDJager)

Dr. De Jager is president of the World Farmers’ Organisation and former president of the Southern African Confederation of Agricultural Unions (SACAU, 2013-2018) and of the Pan African Farmers Union (PAFO, 2014-2017). He is also chairman of the board of Agri All Africa, a board member of FANRPAN and serves on the board of Agri Limpopo, where he is responsible for land reform, transformation, farmer development and Africa Liaison since 2004. He has farmed in South Africa since 1997 (in the South African Lowveld region) with timber and subtropical fruits (avocados, mangoes and macadamia nuts) and also keeps goats.

Chef Arthur Potts Dawson (@ArthurPottsD)

British Chef Arthur Potts Dawson has been cooking for over 30 years, starting his career as a chef in 1987 with a three-year apprenticeship with the Roux brothers. Since then, he has worked at Ken­sington Place, as head chef at the River Café along­side Hugh Fernley-Whittingstall and Pierre Khoffman. He restyled Petersham Nurseries kitchen, led the re-launch of Cecconi's restaurant for the Soho House group, and worked as executive head chef for Jamie Oliver's Fifteen Restaurant and Piccadilly Diner. His two restaurants Acorn House and Water House have won numerous awards for their excellent food and sustainable practices. Additionally, Arthur founded The People’s Super­­market, consults on large scale sustainable food innovation with Ikea Food, The Fazer Group and Unilever, and, as an advocate for the UN World Food Programme, often speaks on issues relating to global hunger and food waste.


Episode 2 – Chefs' Manifesto Area 1 «Ingredients grown with respect for the earth & the oceans» (Release: 17 March)


Chef Anahita Dhondy (@anahita_dhondy)

Indian Chef Anahita Dhondy received her training at India’s Hotel Management Aurangabad and Le Cordon Bleu. She is a well-known champion of traditional Parsi food culture, as well as of lost recipes and ingredients, such as the traditional grain millet. At age 23, Anahita became the Chef Manager of SodaBottleOpener­Wala, a restaurant that cooks authentic Parsi dishes. Anahita aims to be a youth icon and inspiration for aspiring female chefs in India and around the world.

Mike Kelly

Michael Kelly is a freelance writer, bestselling author, broadcaster and social entrepreneur, an informed and impassioned speaker on food issues, self-sufficiency, sustainability and growing your own.  He founded the organisation "GIY (Grow it Yourself)" in 2008, a not-for-profit organisation which aims to inspire people to grow their own food and give them the skills they need to do so successfully. Michael set up the first GIY group in Waterford and not long afterwards, other GIY groups were formed in neighbouring towns. Today, an idea that started local, has gone regional, then national and now international with GIY Movements in Australia and the UK.

Chef Palmiro Ocampo (@Palmiroo)

As an advocate for the World Food Programme (WFP), Chef Palmiro Ocampo is a Zero Hunger champion in his home country Peru, working to eradicate hunger and end all forms of malnutrition. To this end, Chef Palmiro is part of Generacion Con Causa, a new generation of Peruvian chefs that are involved in social gastronomy and in leading the TV show Cocina Con Causa (Cooking with Cause), a programme showcasing nutritious, affordable, tasty and accessible cooking. He has also started his own non-profit Ccori Optima – an organisation which teaches people how to utilise all parts of an ingredient and how to reduce food waste. 

Chef Manjit Singh Gill (@chefmanjitgill)

Former Corporate Chef, ITC Hotels, Indian Chef Manjit Gill is a highly acclaimed chef with over four decades of excellence in the culinary profession. Chef Gill is passionate in researching and applying the learning of Ancient Indian Cuisine and a great believer in the sustainable food philosophy of Indian Vedic knowledge - Ayurveda and Slow food. Chef Manjit serves as President of the Indian Federation of Culinary Associations and as chairman of the World Chefs’ Culinary Culture and Heritage Committee. For his achievements, Chef Gill has been awarded the the “Punjabi Gold Award” for invaluable contribution to Punjabi community and the Lifetime Achiev­ement Award from India’s Ministry of Tourism in January 2006, amongst others.


Episode 3 – Chefs' Manifesto Area 2  «​​​​​Protection of biodiversity & improved animal welfare» (Release: 24 March)

Episode 3

Fabrice DeClerck (@fadeclerck)

Dr. Fabrice DeClerck is the EAT Science Director. In this role, Dr. DeClerck leads the development of EAT’s research and synthesis science. With the Stockholm Resilience Centre, EAT’s Science Secretariat, he works closely with EAT’s partners and programs as the interface between science and practice. Dr. DeClerck’s professional background is in agricultural and environmental sciences with more than a decade focusing on sustainable development in Latin America, Africa, and South East Asia. His collaborations with the health and nutrition community date back to 2004 focusing on dietary and environmental health in the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Dorothy Shaver (@DorothyShaverRD)

Having studied Dietetics and Health Education and Promotion, Dorothy Shaver today works as the Global Sustainability Lead at Knorr, Unilever. She has previously held Unilever positions as Global Nutrition and Health Manager, Nutrition and as Health Training, Operations and Communication Manager. Dorothy is based in the Netherlands.  

Chef Erik Oberholtzer (@ErikOberholtzer)

Erik is a chef, social entrepreneur & food activist. He is co-founder and chairman of LA-based Tender Greens, a healthy food restaurant chain. Founded in 2006, Tender Greens started with a mission of providing seasonal home cooking at affordable prices to as many people as possible, using supply chain innovations & a guiding philosophy that food can transform lives. Tender Greens has since grown to 29 restaurants in California, NY and Massachusetts. Erik has always stayed true to mission, leading various initiatives on food security, urban agriculture and organic farming.

Chef Lerato Sitole (@leratositole)

After qualifying as a chef, Lerato started her career working in restaurants, private corporate catering, on boats and in private homes in South Africa. When she got the opportunity to start her own café in Cape Town, she jumped at the opportunity. However, with no one to look after her children full-time, Chef Lerato had to sell her café and take a more corporate job, before again slipping into being a full-time private chef. Chef Lerato wants to bring Africa together through food and raise awareness to South Africans about neighbouring Africans. 


Episode 4 – Chefs' Manifesto Area 3 «​​​​​Investment in livelihoods» (Release: 31 March)

Episode 4

Chef Michael Elegbede (@elegbede1m)

Michael Adé Elégbèdé from Nigeria started his journey in the kitchen at a very young age. At 13, Michael moved to America, where he spent his spare time work­ing as a cook in his mother’s Nigerian restau­rant. Michael began his culinary career at Alliance Bakery in Chicago and then attended the Culinary Insti­tute of America Greystone in California. After graduating with a degree in Culinary arts, Michael further refined his skills working at restaurants across the country, including the critically acclaimed Eleven Madison Park Restaurant in New York. Elégbèdé works to rediscover and tell the story of Nigeria’s food culture with its unique flavours, ingredients, and cooking traditions, adding his personal touch. 

Chef Pierre Thiam (@chefpierrethiam)

Born and raised in Dakar, Senegal, Pierre Thiam pays homage to traditional West African cuisine through his thoughtful approach to food. He is the Co-Founder of Yolélé Foods, a purpose-driven African food company launched in 2017 that specialises in African super­foods. Thiam is also the Executive Chef at the celebrated Nok by Alara in Lagos, Nigeria. His pan-African fine dining menu brings an elevated experience of the African diaspora onto the table. Based in New York City, Pierre Thiam Catering introduces contemporary interpretations of ethnic flavours to a diverse, savvy clientele, including former UN General Secretary Ban Ki Moon, among others. He has authored two ground-breaking cookbooks.

Chef Ali Mandhry (@ChefAliMandhry)

Ali Said Mandhry, popularly known as Chef Ali L’artiste, is a Celebrity Chef, TV/Radio personality, culinary instructor and food stylist. Born in Mombasa, Ali discovered his love for cooking at the age of nine by cooking with his grandfather. Following high school, Ali started work at the Sarova White Sands Beach Resort and Spa as an apprentice chef before enrolling in a food produc­tion apprenticeship at the Kenya Utalii College. Mandhry then pursued a career as an artistic chef to follow his passion for sugar artistry, pastries and cakes. His aim is to inspire and educate people about the new trends in the culinary world. through developing, writing and sharing recipes on blogs and videos online and in his TV show. Throughout his career, Ali has worked both nationally and internationally to champion Kenyan cuisine.


Episode 5 – Chefs' Manifesto Area 4 «​​​​​Value natural resources & reduce waste» (Release: 7 April)

Episode 5

Chef Mary Sue Milliken (@MarySueMilliken)

Mary Sue is a renowned chef, cookbook author, and television personality from the United States. Mary Sue is most notably recognized as a preeminent ambassador of modern Mexican cuisine with her Border Grill Restaurants and Trucks. Starting as the first female chef at Chicago's Le Perroquet in 1978, Mary Sue went on to refine her skills in Paris at Restaurant D’Olympe, a woman owned Michelin two-star restaurant. Winning the James Beard Award in 1985 was the first of many honours including lifetime achievement awards from Women Chefs and Restaurateurs, CA Restaurant Association, and Menu Masters Hall of Fame. 

Chef Conor Spacey (@Spaceychef)

Irish Chef Conor Spacey always seeks out great Irish produce, foraging and meeting great Irish producers. He is also behind popup restaurant spiltmilk, which show­cases Irish ingredients with a con­tem­porary twist. Conor has train­ed in all areas of kitchens from bakeries, butchering, classical cook­ing, con­tem­porary cooking, large ban­quet­ing, fine dining and bistros. He helped establish FoodSpace, a company that brings together restaurants and cafes across Ireland which prioritise fresh and seasonal produce. FoodSpaces works to build relationships with local producers and growers who value fresh, seasonal produce produced in accordance with ethical, sustainable practices.

Chef Justin Horne (@justinhornechef)

Justin Horne is a British Eco-Chef, Food Waste Activist and Sustainability Lecturer. Justin spent 10 years in fine dining and Michelin star restaurants. He was disillusioned with the imbed­ded wasteful processes of restaurants and there­fore decided to launch Tiny Leaf, London’s first Zero Waste, Organic and Vege­tarian restau­rant, working with farmers, whole­salers and retailers to utilise their surplus and wonky veg. In 2019, Justin launched a circular eco­no­my vertical farm restaurant called S A T I V A at London’s Kings Cross. It grows its own fresh produce, gene­rate its own energy and turn its waste back into energy. Justin also lectures at London’s universities and schools on sustainability and food waste. 


Episode 6 – Chefs' Manifesto Area 5 «​​​​​Celebration of local & seasonal food» (Release: 14 April)

Episode 6

Chef India Hamilton

Le Cordon Bleu trained Chef India Hamilton looks to explore all avenues to improve the food system from production to wellbeing and taste. After obtaining her Grand Diplome, India worked in a variety of London Restaurants - including the Wapping Project and the Windsor Castle - before initiating her own projects in autumn 2015. Her goal is to create ‘wow’ foods, local in a sustainable, accessible way. 

Chef Oliver Rowe (@OliverRowe)

A chef and author whose work focuses on local and seasonal food, London-based Oliver Rowe is passionate about sourcing local produce, both for the seasonality it entails and the narrative it brings to the food he cooks. Rowe trained at Moro and then set up, ran and cooked at both Konstam and Konstam at the Prince Albert. Since 2010, Chef Rowe has worked on a variety of food projects, from residencies, demos, pop-ups and seasonal supper clubs, to food administration, food photography, growing projects and farm work. He also worked as a food stylist, with content appearing in books and publications including The Guardian, The Observer and The Sunday Times. 

Alva Lim

An expert eater, Alva likes to discover the biodiversity and story of delicious foods in Timor-Leste. Alva is the Co-founder, Co-director and founding Head Chef (2016-2018) of the Timor-Leste Food Lab and its flagship Agora Food Studio. When not researching, fermenting or experimenting rare ingredients with the team, Alva moonlights as a sometimes-olive oil judge in Australia. She wants to study the lexicon of food and cooking at the El Bulli Foundation. Some days, she dreams being an apprentice tamagoyaki chef if all else fails. Alva has a background in econometrics and public policy, all of which has helped develop her interest in the behavioural economics of food choices.

Chef Leonilda 'Nuqy' Ximenes

Inspired by the seasonal ingredients in her native Timor-Leste, Nuqy transforms the edible biodiversity of this tropical island into the sublime. Specialising in working with the many varieties of rice, corn and rare root vegetables found in the remote villages where she grew up. Nuqy has been Head Chef at Agora Food Studio Since 2019 and is a founding member of the organisation since its opening in 2016. As well as curating the restaurant's ever-changing menu, she is the lead facilitator of the Timor-Leste Food Innovators Exchange (TLFIX) project that works with Timorese entrepreneurs and communities to increase the presence of nutritious local foods in people's diets. 


Episode 7 – Chefs' Manifesto Area 6 «​​​​​A focus on plant-based ingredients» (Release: 21 April)

Episode 7

Chef Chantelle Nicholson (@chef_chantelle)

Chantelle is the multi-award-winning chef patron at Tredwells, as well as Group Ope­rations Director for Marcus Wareing Restau­rants. As one of the UK’s leading female names in the hospitality industry, Chantelle’s impres­sive ascent on the culinary career ladder and achieve­ments to date set her apart as a remar­kable talent and a source of inspiration to hospitality professionals across the UK. Originally from New Zealand, Chantelle trained as a lawyer before discovering her passion for food. Growing up, she learnt first-hand about seasonal food, about how things grow, and about the ecosystem of the garden.  So, it’s logical that as a fully-fledged chef, her heart lies in what comes from the earth. On the menu at Tredwells, there are therefore plenty of plant-based dishes.

Chef David Johannson

Swedish Chef David Johansson started his career working in a number of restaurants in Stockholm, Denmark, Norway, and France before moving across to the US to work as executive chef at the Swedish Consulate General in New York. From there he opened up an espresso bar that paid tribute to the Swedish tradition “fika” (coffee break) and later expanded the one café into a chain. Upon returning to Sweden, David realized that his passion for food lay with creating food product and so decided to work at IKEA with the aim of showcasing the Swedish cuisine. As a product developer of IKEA Food and restaurant, Johansson tried to implement the following five key principles in tandem: form, function, quality, sustainability, and a low price. David has since gone on to focus on recipe development at Ikea Food. 

Chef Megha Kohli (@meghakohli4)

Currently the head chef of Lavaash By Saby, the Armenian restaurant in Delhi’s artsy Mehrauli area, Megha Kohli has already garnered an experience of twelve years in the industry at this young age. Deeply influenced by her grandmother’s and mothers cooking, Megha started pottering around in the kitchen when she was barely five years old. She has previously worked with Oberoi hotels, The Olive Bar and kitchen group of restau­rants and is also an independent food consultant. Chef Megha believes firmly in using only local, regional and sustainable produce. Her restaurant is one of the first restaurants in India with a menu that uses 100% local ingredients and nothing in the kitchen is imported. In 2020, Megha received the India Chef of the Year Award. 


Episode 8 – Chefs' Manifesto Area 7 «​​​​​Education on food safety & healthy diets» (Release: 28 April)

Episode 8

Chef Sam Kass (@chefsamkass)

Food entrepreneur Sam Kass is a former White House Chef and Senior Policy Advisor for Nutrition. Kass joined the White House kitchen staff in 2009 as Assistant Chef and, in 2010, became Food Initiative Coordinator. During his White House tenure, he took on several additional roles including Executive Director of First Lady Michelle Obama's "Let’s Move!" campaign and senior White House Policy Advisor for Nutrition. Kass is the first person in the history of the White House to have a position in the Executive Office of the President and the Residence. As one of the First Lady’s longest-serving advisors, he served as Senior Policy Advisor for Healthy Food Initiatives and he helped the First Lady create the first major vegetable garden at the White House since Eleanor Roosevelt’s victory garden. In January 2016, Kass launched a food technology company, TROVE, an investment, strategy, and communications consultancy created to "work with corporations both big and small who are serious about transforming our health, climate and planet through food. In 2018, he published his cook book “Eat a Little Better”.

Chef Natacha Gomez (@chefngomez)

Haitian Chef Natacha Gomez is passionate about tourism and gastronomy and became a government official appointed to promote the tourism in Haiti because of that. Her cuisine ranges from the Taino’s, to The New Haitian Gas­tronomy which is about revisiting traditional dishes with a modern twist and to promote local, fresh and organic products. Her company, INVESTA HAITI, created the label 100% Lokal, a movement to help promote buying locally sourced products to boost the region’s economy. Chef instructor for World Central Kitchen, she also has her own line of products ranging from hot sauces, jams, spices and traditional desserts. Food is not her only passion; she is deeply involved in her community by working with two women NGOs to help reduce the gender gap and empowering women. As a James beard Chef, one of Chef Natacha’s goal is to work and make her native land Haiti become a culinary destination.


Bonus Track – Conversation with Professor Tim Lang (Release: 5 May)

Professor Tim Lang

Professor Tim Lang

Tim Lang has been Professor of Food Policy at City University London's Centre for Food Policy since 2002. He founded the Centre in 1994. After a PhD in social psychology at Leeds University, he became a hill farmer in the 1970s in the Forest of Bowland, Lancashire which shifted his attention to food policy, where it has been ever since. For years, he's engaged in academic and public research and debate about its direction, locally to globally. His abiding interest is how policy addresses the mixed challenge of being food for the environment, health, social justice, and citizens. What is a good food system? How is ours measured and measuring up? His current research interests are (a) sustainable diets, (b) the meaning of modern food security and (c) the implications of Brexit for the food system. He has been a consultant to the World Health Organisation, FAO and UNEP and has been a special advisor to four House of Commons Select Committee inquiries. Tim helped launch the 100 World Cities Urban Food Policy Pact in Milan 2015 and was a Commissioner on the EAT-Lancet Commission on Healthy Diets from Sustainable Food Systems (2016-19) which published the highly acclaimed 'Food in the Anthropocene' report (The Lancet, January 2019).


Episode 9 – Chefs' Manifesto Area 8 «​​​​​Nutritious food that is accessible & affordable for all» (5 May)

Episode 9

Chef Lorna Maseko (@Lorns_Maseko)

South African Chef Lorna Maseko is a ballet dancer turned cele­brity TV chef. Her culinary adventures began when she took part in the first Celebrity MasterChef on DSTV and made it to the final Top 6 contestants. From this competition, Chef Lorna de­cided to launch a series of cooking events and blog titled “Cook­ing with Lorna and Friends”. In its fourth year, this cooking event has amassed a large following of food lovers across the country. Chef Lorna is currently the host and executive producer of The Hostess with Lorna Maseko, a new lifestyle reality series for food and entertainment connoisseurs. Chef Lorna is also in the process of writing a cookbook that is set for release at the end of 2018. 

Alyson Greenhalgh-Ball (@agb70)

With over twenty-five years’ experience in the Public Health Sector - Alyson is a state-registered dietitian and the Global Lead for Kellogg for Health and Wellbeing. Her present role includes development and implementation of the Wellbeing strategy which encompasses a holistic approach across human and planetary health and bringing this to life across the various business units, brands and foods around the world. This includes a focus on food reformulation and innovation; incorporating a greater diversity of responsibly sourced plant-based ingredients, improving nutrient density, developing best practice for communications/claims and engagement with our external partners. Prior to Kellogg’s, Alyson worked at the University of Manchester and Leeds focusing on Nutritional Epidemiology; researching bio-markers for carbohydrate intake and understanding food patterns and intakes in relation to Diabetes and hypertension.

Chef Arthur Potts Dawson (@ArthurPottsD)

British Chef Arthur Potts Dawson has been cooking for over 30 years, starting his career as a chef in 1987 with a three-year apprenticeship with the Roux brothers. Since then, he has worked at Ken­sington Place, as head chef at the River Café along­side Hugh Fernley-Whittingstall and Pierre Khoffman. He restyled Petersham Nurseries kitchen, led the re-launch of Cecconi's restaurant for the Soho House group, and worked as executive head chef for Jamie Oliver's Fifteen Restaurant and Piccadilly Diner. His two restaurants Acorn House and Water House have won numerous awards for their excellent food and sustainable practices. Additionally, Arthur founded The People’s Super­­market, consults on large scale sustainable food innovation with Ikea Food, The Fazer Group and Unilever, and, as an advocate for the UN World Food Programme, often speaks on issues relating to global hunger and food waste.


Chefs' Manifesto Podcast Sponsors


Many thanks to our sponsors and partners – The Global GoalsKelloggsKnorr, GIY Ireland, OmVed Gardens and EAT – for making the production of the first series of the Chefs' Manifesto podcast possible.  

Please e-mail Paul at if you're interested in becoming a sponsor/partner for Season 2 of the Chefs' Manifesto Podcast. 

Are you interested in other podcasts on food systems & sustainability? Check out & subscribe to the IFAD Podcast Farms. Food. Future !