Nestle denies ‘double standard’ on baby food in poorer countries

ZURICH (AFP) – Nestle denied Thursday that it was applying any “double standard” after an NGO accused the Swiss food giant of selling baby food with high levels of added sugar in low-income countries but not in wealthier nations. “There is no double standard,” the company said in a statement. “We apply the same nutrition, health and wellness principles everywhere.” In a report published last week, Swiss NGO Public Eye said that “two of the […]

Uber Eats starts robot deliveries in Tokyo

By Katie Forster TOKYO, March 5, 2024 (AFP) – “Caution: robot!” chirps the green self-driving delivery vehicle as it trundles down the street to a pork cutlet restaurant in Tokyo to pick up a meal ordered on Uber Eats. Starting Wednesday, robot deliveries will be offered in a small area of the city by the US-based food app, which hopes to eventually roll out the service more widely in Japan. The country, facing growing labour […]

Food watchdog lodges complaint over Nestle mineral water ‘fraud’

PARIS, Feb 21, 2024 (AFP) – Consumer watchdog Foodwatch said it was filing a legal complaint Wednesday against food giant Nestle and another group over them allegedly fraudulently treating water for their top mineral water brands. A government probe reported by media last month said about 30 percent of mineral water sold in France had undergone purification treatment only meant to be used on tap water. Foodwatch said it was lodging its complaint with a […]

Japan’s humble ‘onigiri’ rice balls get image upgrade

By Mathias Cena with Cecilia Sanchez in New York TOKYO, Feb 15, 2024 (AFP) – Wrapped in seaweed and stuffed with delicious fillings, “onigiri” rice balls are shaking off their reputation as a cheap and uninspiring snack in Japan — and enticing hungry converts abroad. Mouth-watering pictures on social media, rising demand for affordable lunches, and a surge in tourism to Japan are all drawing people to the humble onigiri. Just ask any of the […]

Ivory Coast chefs cook up new twist on African food

By Marietou BÂ ABIDJAN, Jan 3, 2024 (AFP) – In the kitchen of his Abidjan restaurant, Ivory Coast chef Charlie Koffi prepares his country’s staggering tropical bounty with the techniques of fine French cuisine. And he’s far from alone. A growing number of his fellow chefs in the West African nation are retouching local specialities with cooking skills picked up elsewhere. One of Koffi’s signature dishes is an adaptation of gouagouassou sauce, a local specialty. […]

Pastry chef of year says pleasure comes first

By Olga NEDBAEVA PARIS, Nov 13, 2023 (AFP) – Nina Metayer, the first woman to win one of the world’s top pastry chef awards, doesn’t believe in cutting back on the butter. Metayer’s cakes have just won her the coveted “World Confectioner” award from the International Union of Bakers and Pastry Chefs. This is the first time the award has gone to a woman in its 92-year history. But you won’t find the 35-year-old following […]

Pakistani biryani: a spicy recipe for delectable debate

By Ashraf KHAN, Joe STENSON KARACHI, Sept 28, 2023 (AFP) – Eying each other across a stream of traffic, rival Pakistani biryani joints vie for customers, serving a fiery medley of meat, rice and spice that unites and divides South Asian appetites. Both sell a niche version of the dish, steeped in the same vats, with matching prices and trophies commending their quality. But in Karachi, where a biryani craze boomed after the creation of […]

S.African chickens hit by ‘worst’ bird flu outbreak

JOHANNESBURG, Sept 22, 2023 (AFP) – South African poultry farmers have warned of possible chicken and egg shortages as they battle what the industry says is the worst bird flu outbreak ever to hit the country. Producer Quantum Foods said on Friday that this year it had lost almost two million chickens — worth a total of more than 100 million rand ($5.3 million) — because of the disease. “The bird flu outbreak is the […]

In war-scarred Iraqi city, food business gives women independence

By Mohammad Salim Abir Jassem is busy preparing stuffed vegetables at a kitchen in Iraq’s Mosul, where after years of unrest a women-run catering service has helped single mothers like her achieve financial security. The 37-year-old, who lost her husband while the city was under the control of the Islamic State (IS) group, said she had to get a job to put food on the table for her and her children. “If I didn’t work, […]

Robot fried chicken: entrepreneur seeks to improve S. Korea’s favourite food

By Claire LEE In fried-chicken-obsessed South Korea, restaurants serving the nation’s favourite fast-food dish dot every street corner. But Kang Ji-young’s establishment brings something a little different to the table: a robot is cooking the chicken. Eaten at everything from tiny family gatherings to a 10-million-viewer live-streamed “mukbang” — eating broadcast — by K-pop star Jungkook of BTS fame, fried chicken is deeply embedded in South Korean culture. Paired with cold lager and known as […]

Japan PM eats ‘safe and delicious’ Fukushima fish

  TOKYO, Aug 30, 2023 (AFP) – Japan’s prime minister ate what he called “safe and delicious” fish from Fukushima on Wednesday, days after wastewater was released from the area’s crippled nuclear plant into the Pacific. A video clip showing Fumio Kishida eating Fukushima fish, published on social media by his office, comes after China banned all seafood imports from its neighbour following the discharge that began on August 24. “This is very good,” Kishida […]

Foreign chefs conquer Paris with childhood flavors for French cuisine

By Olga NEDBAEVA Agence France-Presse PARIS, France (AFP) — “My mum doesn’t agree with what I do here: at home, we don’t eat like this,” laughs Alan Geaam, the first Lebanese chef to earn a Michelin star in Paris. The self-taught chef, who fled his country’s civil war in 1999, nonetheless believes that promoting Lebanon’s culinary riches means combining them with some of “the elegance and refinement” of French cuisine. At his self-titled restaurant in […]