Specialty Food Magazine

Spring 2020

Specialty Food Magazine is the leading publication for retailers, manufacturers and foodservice professionals in the specialty food trade. It provides news, trends and business-building insights that help readers keep their businesses competitive.

Issue link: https://www.e-digitaleditions.com/i/1220124

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Page 32 of 75

30 SPECIALTY FOOD SPECIALTYFOOD.COM Co-located event BARCELONA April 20th - 23rd, 2020 Gran Via Venue www.alimentaria.com A unique Food, Drinks and Gastronomy Experience International Food, Drinks & Food Service Exhibition Q&A Where do you see the connection between more opportunities for women and the issues around harassment in the industry? When there is a long-ingrained culture, and if a back-of-house staff is majority male and is supporting that kind of culture, then one woman in that kitchen may feel intimidated or may not feel there's an opening to speak up, especially if this is a job and an income that she needs. By shifting the balance to put more women in the back of house, something comes from having a group of people that are seeing what's going on and shining a brighter light on it. Some empowerment comes from just having a stronger presence. If a kitchen does have an issue with the back-of-house boys' culture, breaking that up by including more females on the staff can have a big impact. "Oh, just let the guys do that job"—and that sort of thing. When it's less obvious, it's probably slower to change because it feels like that's just the way that things are. On a broader scale, for instance, only five of the top 50 restaurants are owned by women. If you look at chefs and the way they're portrayed on TV, we tend to think of men as chefs and women as cooks. There's a much larger cultural norm around kitchens and restaurant management and leadership that is ingrained. We're hoping to be a small piece of moving that forward. Mark Hamstra is a regular contributor to Specialty Food. PHOTO: TOM HUYNH

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