Organic food has successfully transitioned from top shelf to mainstream. Big supermarkets now have their own organic range, as they’ve understood that we increasingly care about what’s on our plate, and what goes into our bodies.
Yet, there’s an almost schizophrenic nature to our diets. Our bodies go from temple during the week to temple of doom on the weekend. From Monday to Friday, people queue up for green smoothies and Buddha bowls, but spend their weekends somewhere between cheap vodka shots and greasy food deliveries. While we’re definitely not ones to condemn a bit of fun, we’d like to draw attention to the fact that both our bodies and our planet would benefit from a little more care when it comes to our tipple of choice.
We speak with Sian Redgrave, a creative who currently has her heart on food. Sian views food in the holistic sense, understanding its importance for our mental and physical health, environmental impact and its ability to draw people together.
We’re increasingly caring about what we consume, but seem to struggle when it comes to wine.
Us humans love to categorise and place things into boxes of 'good' and 'bad', particularly with our diets. If we all looked at what we eat and drink as a source of nourishment and enjoyment maybe this would be different. Looking for quality and appreciating craftsmanship is a good way of easing those ideas and seeing that indulging and enjoying what goes into our bodies doesn't need to be so rigid. The same goes for wine and alcohol.
Are we understanding the impact on our body better than the impact on our planet?
Over the last few years, the food and wellness industry was strongly fixated on the things we consume having a huge impact on us physically, especially in a superficial sense. I can really see this changing now however. Obviously our health is paramount to our lives but the state of the world and our impact on it environmentally is increasingly becoming something that people can’t afford to shy away from.
How do you think sustainability is growing across industries and sectors?
Sustainability is one of if not the most important topics globally right now, for the right reasons. My time in fashion really taught me to save and invest in things that would last, and that same mentality can so easily be applied to food.
Sustainability has become really high on the radar but not nearly enough. Fast food and delivery services encourage people to pay little for the "quick fix".
If people become more inspired by what they are eating they will see that investing in a beautiful bottle of olive oil or local salt is something that lasts and can be savoured.
Supporting places like Zara and constantly eating Uber Eats may bring you instant gratification but we all need to look at the repercussions and see that it's just contributing to land fill.
Are you noticing change in the hospitality world?
There is a massive demand now for local produce and community developed products, especially in Australia. We all probably grew up being told that the French make the best wine and the Italians the best cheese but Australia is becoming more and more recognised for its incredible climate diversity and food quality.
This is translating to the hospitality world massively. Most people I know and work with in the industry look for local first and support it. The more a community sees restaurants and local cafes using and promoting local produce the more it will filter through to what they are choosing to bring into their homes and meals.
What is the best step towards a more conscious way of consuming food and wine?
My greatest advice would be for people to go out and educate themselves and strive to learn. Knowledge really is power and the more we are aware of the impact of our choices the more proactive we can be about implementing changes into our lifestyle.