DFSS is coming up March 29th and we’re bringing some of the participants to you now with a pre-summit interview. In this edition we talk to Gregor Streun, Executive Sous Chef at Grand Hyatt. If you want to see a listing of speakers and sessions, please click here. To register as a delegate, click here.
1) Grand Hyatt places a lot of emphasis on sustainability, could you share more about this commitment of the corporation – maybe a brief about how it got started on this commitment and some examples that you would like to highlight as part of its efforts?
Seven years ago, our Executive Chef, Lucas Glanville, pioneered this movement within the hotel focusing on introducing sustainable seafood and striving to consistently increase its presence on our guests’ plates. We’ve been known to be the precursor of this movement in the city. Fast forward years later and we’ve worked tirelessly to expand that original mindset to as many facets of our business as we possibly can. This mindset has grown into several initiatives we have here at Grand Hyatt Singapore, such as, the introduction of various plant-based foods into the Southeast Asian market, such as the elimination of single-use plastics, the installation of a waste management plant and trigeneration plant, sourcing herbs and greens from our rooftop gardens and more.
2) Where do you see plant-based products fitting into this concept of living sustainably, and how can businesses tap on this shift in the way of life?
Plant-based food products are simply one part of living sustainably, however it is not limited to just that. On a micro level, more and more individuals are taking steps to live sustainably and this in itself is extremely promising. Businesses and organisations should be there to help support this concept, in whichever capacity they are able to do so. Here at Grand Hyatt Singapore, providing that support to the community is part of why we do what we do. We introduced plant-based food products to our menu to give all diners an option to choose to have something more sustainable. Ultimately, sustainable living is a much broader issue that impacts us all and we, individuals and businesses, should be support each other in this.
3) How did Grand Hyatt come to be a part of DFSS? Was it a part of the first edition of DFSS as well?
This is the first year Grand Hyatt Singapore is part of DFSS. Our former Food & Beverage Director, Jerome Pagnier, was a member of the Alliance for a Responsible Future. Hence the connection was made and we are very thankful to be able to work with Cath, Guan Hou and George on such an iconic event.
4) what was the process like in curating the menu for this edition of DFSS? – were there any challenges that were faced, and what were some of the considerations that were taken into account in creating the menu?
Our Executive Sous Chef, Gregor Streun, was put in contact with the event food partners and from there, he gathered a list of items that were being provided for DFSS and started the menu creation. Identifying items and products that were able to stand on their own, but also putting various items together to form a wholesome dish. He is also aiming to highlight the different cuisines in the menus to show the melting pot of cultures that cumulates in Singapore.
5) Is there a demand or a substantial market for plant-based meals in Singapore or in Asia, and in your opinion what does this mean for businesses?
It is very exciting to see the shift in the food and beverage scene both locally and in other parts of Asia. It is important for businesses to provide alternatives to create a more inclusive dining experience for all, and these alternatives have allowed us to see a new market coming through our doors. Beyond that, we have also noticed that regular guests are becoming more open to trying the alternatives that we have put forth to them. The reception has been overwhelmingly positive and it proves that businesses should not shy away from plant-based options.