food diplomacy

Iran has sent planes full of food to Qatar and will continue to send more each day as the blockaded nation weathers its diplomatic crisis, Iranian officials said this weekend. Tehran says it will send another 100 tons of fruit and vegetables every day to Qatar, which relies on imports from neighboring countries for much of its food supplies and is facing shortages after its powerful neighboring countries cut off economic and diplomatic ties. 

A little bit crab apple, a little bit cherimoya, the ambitious atemoya hopes for soft power prowess and export success. When the atemoya (鳳梨釋迦)  was first exported from Taiwan in 2008, its sales quickly surpassed that of other Taiwanese staples, including mangoes and pineapples.

Visitors of Embassy Chef Challenge can sample authentic cuisines from 35 countries in a single day. One minute they can enjoy salmon ceviche and merquén mussels from Chile, and the next, jollof rice with chicken and fried plantains from Ghana. Adults can taste wines from Bolivia or the iconic gin-based cocktail from Singapore, the Singapore Sling. [...] “It’s a very happy place,” said Red Garcia, the chef representing the Philippines. “Food is like music. We break bread, and we share our culture and values. Everyone brings the best of everything.”

The Thai Ambassador said: “The Royal Thai Embassy is very pleased to work with Serena Hotel to present authentic and Halal Thai food to Pakistani guests. Thailand is famous for excellence in food and for its wonderful cultural heritage as well as the amazing cultural performances. The Royal Thai Embassy in Islamabad hopes that everyone will enjoy authentic Thai cuisine and the very lively performances by the professional cultural troupe from Thailand.”

As the Ambassador of France in India, Alexandre Ziegler, put it so expressively: “Partnerships between nations are not forged only by diplomats signing MoUs.” Ziegler, who’s from Sauternes, home to the world’s finest dessert wines in Bordeaux, and who owes his Germanic name to his Swiss great-grandfather, kept repeating that French cuisine is not only haute cuisine. [...] Gout France may be a one-night affair, but it underlines one salient feature of the emerging world civilisation — food brings people closer in a discordant universe.

Raffarin said another former French premier, Laurent Fabius, had once organized – on the same night – some 150 dinners in French embassies around the world, with more than 1,300 chefs preparing the food for the guests who included public figures and political leaders. Gastronomy, he argued, has served as a means of creating networks and building relationships in a world in which networks are vital.

 

Kimchi in space. The Kimchi Bus. Government-sponsored chefs and restaurants spreading the word of Kimchi around the globe. South Korea is one of the nations most involved in branding itself through its food, using food as a part of it’s “soft power.” It’s called “Gastrodiplomacy” — the use of food as a diplomatic tool to help resolve conflicts and foster connections between nations.

This Saturday, February 11th, food fair Junta Local will take place from 10AM in the grounds of Botafogo’s Christ Church. With free entry and continuing until 6PM, the artisanal culinary fair hopes to promote cultural inclusivity and exchange through different international cuisines.

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