University of Barcelona
Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes 585
08007 Barcelona

Inspired by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and in recognition of the 10th anniversary of the designation by UNESCO of the Mediterranean Diet as an Intangible Cultural Heritage, how can scientists, chefs, business and government leaders, and food systems change-makers collaborate to significantly increase the presence of the heart of the traditional Mediterranean Diet—fruits and vegetables, whole grains, olive oil, legumes, nuts and seeds—on the menus of restaurants and foodservice operations across the Mediterranean and worldwide? And to that end, how can this same collaboration inspire next-generation culinary strategy, food product innovation, and consumer engagement building on the genius of the centuries-old food cultures of the Mediterranean basin?
The Torribera Mediterranean Center (TMC), a joint project of the University of Barcelona and The Culinary Institute of America, is hosting its second international leadership conference October 19-21, 2020 in Barcelona. Tomorrow Tastes Mediterranean aims to help the restaurant, foodservice and affiliated sectors better understand and transfer the healthful, sustainable, and cultural principles of the Mediterranean Diet into menus and products suited to the demands of 21st century consumers. Some of the world’s foremost scholars, chefs, and other experts within and beyond the Mediterranean region will help translate theory into practice, to inspire new foods and menus that are healthier for people, planet, and profits.

It’s one thing to know that the traditional Mediterranean Diet is healthful and sustainable—and of great cultural significance.  It’s another to understand how to operationalize this dietary pattern into strategies for menus that reflect customer preferences and companies’ abilities to support those menus with ingredients and product solutions.  Scientists who study the Mediterranean Diet rarely know much about the realities of the professional kitchen—whether that kitchen is in an independent restaurant, cruise ship, office cafeteria, hotel banquet department, school or hospital, or in the research and development department of a food manufacturer. Likewise, chefs rarely have much time to sort through the latest nutrition research studies or environmental analyses and understand how these further shape our understanding of chronic disease patterns and trends, or global sustainability imperatives.  Tomorrow Tastes Mediterranean provides the needed bridge between two types of knowledge creation: scientific and culinary.

In practice, this means that sessions at the 2020 conference will specifically focus on translation—the culinary and business operationalization—of the Mediterranean Diet, from dishes and menus to financial models and marketing campaigns. You’ll hear from acclaimed chefs, culinary experts, business owners, and foodservice operators about the innovative strategies they have used in their kitchens to advance plant-forward cooking with clear takeaways to ensure you’ll be able to develop similar paths in your own companies.

You’ll hear from world-renowned scientists who have developed research projects for companies and organizations that have led to real-life change in food habits. You’ll hear from branding experts, communications strategists, and data analysts on how to best share the message of health, sustainability, and flavor that surrounds the Mediterranean Diet to attract and retain customers and grow your business accordingly. 

The traditional Mediterranean Diet received the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage designation in 2010. Even if it has been formally codified only for 60 or so years, it is one of the world’s oldest ways of eating, reflecting a region rich in customs and abundant in health-promoting ingredients and preparation methods. How do we, how do you make this relevant for today’s diners? How do we connect the Mediterranean Diet to other global food trends—and other models of healthy, sustainable, culturally-based cooking? How do chefs and manufacturers expand the kind of foods customers think about when they hear “Mediterranean Diet” or “Mediterranean-inspired dietary patterns”? How do chefs and manufacturers leverage the Mediterranean Diet to engage their customers and nudge them towards healthier, more sustainable food choices? Tomorrow Tastes Mediterranean 2020 will take on these questions and more, to help attendees identify and develop the craveable, healthy, and sustainable foods of, yes, tomorrow. 

October 19: Meetings of the advisory councils, by invitation only
October 20, 9h-19h: presentations and panels, lunch and coffee breaks, at Edificio Histórico, University of Barcelona, Gran Via de les Corts Catalanes 585.
October 21: Experiential activities throughout Barcelona

COST: €100

FOR WHOM: Chefs and foodservice professionals; research and development chefs; food industry professionals; culinary educators and gastronomy professors; scientists; nutritionists and dieticians; food scientists and technologists; tourism and hospitality professionals; food, health, nutrition, sustainability, and tourism communication specialists and journalists; and regional and national government leaders.