• Strategic PR

Join the Mandela Day soup challenge and feed the hungry


Image: Citrum Khumalo, Owner of Culinary Passions School of Hospitality
Citrum Khumalo, Owner of Culinary Passions School of Hospitality

Chefs with Compassion is launching its third annual #67000litre Mandela Day soup cooking challenge to home cooks, soup kitchens, corporates, and other compassionate South Africans, with the aim of smashing the target for the third time.


The 67000-litre soup challenge for Mandela Day has fed close on 600 000 hungry people over the first two years as cooks across the country rose to the challenge, first in 2020 in the face of the devastating pandemic, and again in 2021 following the July riots in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng.


This year’s headline partner in the #67000litres Challenge is one of South Africa’s leading premium home appliance brands, AEG. Chef Coo Pillay, CWC’s national project manager, welcomes the company’s willingness to put funding and their name behind the challenge.


“We are very excited to be joining this wonderful initiative and look forward to this year’s challenge. Waste consciousness is essential in building sustainable communities, and we all have a role to play in achieving greater food security for our nation. This campaign is an outstanding example of people coming together through collective action, upholding the spirit of ubuntu and social cohesion by providing a hearty meal to those in need,” said Murray Crow, Managing Director of Electrolux South Africa, the manufacturer of AEG.


The Chefs with Compassion (CWC) 2022 challenge is going out to:


  • Cooks – including home cooks all over the country, each contributing a R100 participation fee

  • Corporates – for a participation fee of R5 000 for small and medium companies and R15 000 for large corporates

  • Communities – community organisations, church groups and other religious organisations, hunger relief organisations and NPOs affiliated to Chefs with Compassion, for an optional participation fee

The participants in all these categories are challenged to cook as many litres of delicious, nourishing soup as they can in 67 minutes during the Mandela Day weekend of Saturday 16 to Monday 18 July, and deliver it to their chosen beneficiary organisation.


Pillay says the funds collected through the challenge are used to sustain Chefs with Compassion’s operational costs. “We run a sharehouse in Johannesburg, with a dedicated team of waste warriors headed up by our food rescue partner Hanneke van Linge of Nosh Food Rescue and sharehouse manager, Jane Gqozo. They diligently rescue produce from the Joburg Fresh Produce Market and from donors across the food supply chain. True waste is separated out from food fit for human consumption, which is distributed to community kitchens to create nourishing meals.


A key aspect of the 2022 challenge is creating greater awareness of the enormity of food waste in the country, which annually accounts for about one third of the food produced in the country – an estimated 10 million tons of food is wasted every year, while about 20 million people go to bed hungry every night. The CWC Mandela Day initiative challenges all participating cooks to clear out their pantries, rescue and freeze scraps of vegetables, and use ingredients sourced sustainably to emphasise the #FeedBelliesNotBins message.


“We embrace the opportunity that Mandela Day gives us to highlight the devastating impact of food waste on the environment and how this can be prevented by redirecting it to people who can use it to feed their communities,” adds Pillay.


In the face of this food waste crisis, the harsh reality of child malnutrition in South Africa must also be faced, particularly as it reached a new high of 27% in 2021. A Mail & Guardian article in February 2021 headlined ‘South African children suffer the slow violence of malnutrition’, stated that malnutrition “slowly eats away at children’s potential, eroding their physical health and cognitive development and undermining their education and economic prospects – driving an intergenerational cycle of poverty, malnutrition and ill-health that comes at a huge cost for individual children, their families, and the South African economy.”


Pillay says, “It takes compassion to not only recognise the need in our fellow human beings, but to do something to make a difference – no matter how small or big – by reducing food waste and feeding the hungry in our communities. Our 67000-litre soup challenge has proved over the years to benefit those who get involved in rescuing food waste, cooking it and feeding people in need, as much as it benefits those who are fed. Please join us in whatever way you can.”


To register as a participant in the #67000litre Mandela Day campaign, visit www.cwc.org.za.


Image: Participation from the Free State in the 2021 edition of #67000litres
Participation from the Free State in the 2021 edition of #67000litres

Image: Students from Culinary Passion School of Hospitality in Midrand
Students from Culinary Passion School of Hospitality in Midrand

Image: Participation from the Free State in the 2021 edition of #67000litres
Participation from the Free State in the 2021 edition of #67000litres

Image: Nosh Food Rescue cooking in the 2021 #67000litres Challenge at HTA
Nosh Food Rescue cooking in the 2021 #67000litres Challenge at HTA

Image: Masterchef contestant Thembisa Jordaan, who will be participating in this year's #67000litres Challenge
Masterchef contestant Thembisa Jordaan, who will be participating in this year's #67000litres Challenge

Image: Masterchef contestant Thembisa Jordaan, who will be participating in this year's #67000litres Challenge
Masterchef contestant Thembisa Jordaan, who will be participating in this year's #67000litres Challenge

Image: HTA School of Culinary Art students participating in 2021
HTA School of Culinary Art students participating in 2021

Image: HTA School of Culinary Art participants in 2021
HTA School of Culinary Art participants in 2021

Image: HTA School of Culinary Art participants in 2021
HTA School of Culinary Art participants in 2021

Image: Chef Dasen Sarugaser, one of the organisers of the Chefs with Compassion #67000litres Challenge
Chef Dasen Sarugaser, one of the organisers of the Chefs with Compassion #67000litres Challenge

Image: Chef James Khoza, Chairman of Chefs with Compassion and President of SA Chefs
Chef James Khoza, Chairman of Chefs with Compassion and President of SA Chefs

Image: Chef Busisiwe Tema with recipients of soup in Tembisa, in the 2021 #67000litres challenge
Chef Busisiwe Tema with recipients of soup in Tembisa, in the 2021 #67000litres challenge

0 views0 comments