The Food Forever Experience


On 11 June 2019 in Stockholm, Sweden, we partnered with Chef’s Manifesto and challenged 18 leading chefs from around the world to showcase what we may be eating in the future if we embrace some of the weird and wonderful foods currently on the margins of the culinary mainstream. 

Pairing up into ten teams, the chefs created innovative dishes using unusual plants with wonderful names like scotch bonnet and Skånska gryn. 150 leaders from private sector, government and beyond came to taste the mouthwatering results and discuss how we can work together to build a more diverse, sustainable, and delicious future.

Meet the Chefs

The Ingredients

  • Buckwheat

    Despite its name, buckwheat is unrelated to wheat and is not a grass at all. The triangular seeds can be milled into flour with a nutty flavor. It is gluten-free and rich in protein and fibre. Buckwheat was domesticated in Central Asia and is a hardy plant which can tolerate poor soil and cold climates. It can be used as a ‘cover crop’ to help keep weeds away and to reduce soil erosion.

  • Chickpea

    Chickpeas are traditionally popular in Indian and Middle Eastern dishes where it plays an important cultural role as well as nutritional, being almost a quarter protein. More recently their rich, creamy and nutty flavor has been in demand in Western diets. Chickpeas can grow in dry environments and capture its own nitrogen, reducing the need for water and fertilizer.

  • Cowpea

    Cowpea is a tough crop, popular throughout the dry tropics and subtropics worldwide. It thrives in sandy soils and tolerates drought better than most crops. It is multipurpose, grown for both humans and livestock. The peas, the fresh pods and the fresh leaves all make excellent vegetables with a high nutritional value. In dry form the grains are eaten boiled or as a snack. Cowpea is a high quality legume for livestock feed, and is also used for erosion control.

  • Enoki Mushrooms

    Known as golden needles, this winter fungus in cultivated form is white, with long, thin stems and small caps. They can be eaten fresh or dried and have a mild, fruity flavor. They originated in East Asia, and are still eaten commonly in China, Japan and Vietnam.

  • Finger Millet

    Finger millet is a hardy crop that is well adapted to the arid highland areas of Africa and Asia. Its small, tough grains are easily stored, ensuring a reliable food source in times of drought and crop failure. By providing essential amino acids, finger millet is an important addition to diets relying mostly on other starchy crops. The grains are ground and used in baking flatbread, preparing porridges and also for brewing beer, and the straw is used as animal fodder.

  • Green pea

    The pea is most commonly the small seed or the seed-pod of the pod fruit Pisum sativum. It’s a cool season crop grown in many parts of the world. They do not thrive in the summer heat of warmer temperate and lowland tropical climates, but do grow well in cooler, high altitude, tropical areas. Peas are starchy, but high in fiber, protein, vitamin A, vitamin B6, vitamin C, vitamin K, phosphorus, magnesium, copper, iron, zinc and lutein.

  • Kombu

    Kombu is a green kelp that can be eaten fresh. However, once a drying technique was developed in Japan hundreds of years ago, its consumption became widespread throughout the country.

  • Maize flour

    Maize (called corn in the United States, Canada, and Australia) is the most widely produced crop in the world. This cereal, which originated in Mexico, is now grown in at least 164 countries around the world and has a tremendous diversity with over 28,000 different varieties. Human consumption of maize and maize meal constitutes a staple food in many regions of the world, and it provides about one-third of the calorie intake in Latin America, the Caribbean and Sub-Saharan Africa. Maize meal is made into a thick porridge in many cultures: from the polenta of Italy and the mãmãligã of Romania to the food called sadza, nshima, ugali and mealie pap in Africa. It is the main ingredient for tortilla, tamale, posole, pinole and many other dishes of Mexican food, and for chicha, a fermented beverage of Central and South America.

  • Moringa

    Moringa is a fast-growing, drought-resistant tree native to India, but found in many parts of the tropics. It is sometimes called the “Never Die Tree” because of its extremely hardy nature. The young seed pods and leaves are used as vegetables and many other parts are used in traditional herbal medicine.

  • Pumpkin Flowers

    Pumpkins are native to North America and its flesh, seeds, leaves and flowers are edible. The yellow/ orange flowers of the pumpkin can be eaten cooked, stuffed and fried. They have a flavor that’s somewhere between asparagus, broccoli and spinach and soft texture. The leaves are often left behind when pumpkins are harvested, yet they are high in vitamin C, so need not be overlooked.

  • Purple Yam

    Also called “Ube,” purple yam is an easy growing crop which originated in the Philippines. The tubers which are bright purple due to the flavonoid anthocyanin – are more nutritious than most, rich in vitamin E and fibre. Purple yam grows faster than many other types, and as such is used as a famine crop across the tropical and subtropical regions of the world. It can be prepared similar to potatoes, and is a star in the dish, ube halayá, a Filipino sweet pudding.

  • Quinoa

    Quinoa was domesticated five to seven thousand years ago by farmers living along the shores of Lake Titicaca. It can tolerate water with elevated levels of salt, high winds, frosts, and droughts, which allows it to be cultivated in high-risk climate regions. It is one of the few crops that can survive in the Andean Altiplano’s harsh clime. There are hundreds of varieties and this diversity can still be found around Lake Titicaca.

  • Scotch Bonnet

    The most widely used hot pepper in Caribbean cuisine, Scotch Bonnets are small, brightly-colored chili peppers that pack a remarkable punch. Beneath the heat is a rich, fruity flavor profile that plays a substantial role in making many Caribbean jerk sauces and preparations so irresistible. The scotch bonnet is named for its resemblance to the traditional Scottish bonnet worn by men. It measures 80,000–400,000 SHU on the Scoville scale. For comparison, most jalapeño peppers have a heat rating of 2,500 to 8,000.

  • Skånska Gryn

    Oats, rye, wheat and barley from Skåne together form this tasty, locally-sourced alternative to rice or pasta.

  • Soybean

    Soybean originated in Eastern Asia, probably in north and central China and is now one of the most widely grown legumes in the world. Soybeans have been grown as a food crop for thousands of years in China and other countries of East and South East Asia and are still to this day, an important component of the traditional popular diet in these regions. Soy has more protein per hectare than any other crop and contains significant amounts of vitamin K and B, amongst other vitamins and nutrients. It’s used in a host of popular products, like tofu miso and tempeh, but is primarily, an industrial crop, cultivated for oil and protein. Despite the relatively low oil content of the seed, soybeans are the largest single source of edible oil and account for roughly 50% of the total oilseed production of the world.

  • Plantain

    Bananas and plantains are grown in more than 130 countries across the tropics, and about 90% are produced on small farms and consumed locally. They are particularly important in East Africa where they constitute the main staple food for about 50% of the population. In terms of gross value of production, bananas and plantains are the developing world’s fourth most important crop after rice, wheat and maize. The fruits are highly nutritious, containing large amounts of carbohydrates and minerals such as phosphorus, calcium, and potassium as well as vitamins A and C.

  • Teff

    A cereal native to the highlands of the Horn of Africa, teff has been central to diets in Ethiopia for centuries. It is the main ingredient in the national dish of both Ethiopia and Eritrea: a flatbread known as injera.

  • Turtle Bean

    The black turtle bean is a small and sweet variety of the common bean. It is an especially popular ingredient in Latin America. It has a meaty texture with a mushroom-like flavour and is high in protein, folate and iron.

Our Partners

The experience was made possible by the commitment of our partner.


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