A week dedicated to food is underway in Milan. There are loads of events and initiatives on the theme of gastronomy that are being included for the first time in a broader Food Week event. They’re taking place in a “delectable side event” called Milan Food City. From the 4th to the 11th of May, more than 320 initiatives will be dotted around the city’s markets, museums, cultural spaces, shops and restaurants to give everyone an exclusive taste experience. Will it be enough to keep up the mission and values of the 2015 Expo?
Tastings, workshops, exhibitions, street food and culinary spectacles: there’s something to suit all tastes. An absolute must-see is “Storycooking,” where Enrico Bartolini, Filippo La Mantia and other esteemed chefs make presentations that fall somewhere between storytelling and cooking shows.
There are plenty of other fantastic events like the Street Food Parade, the Via Tortona Wonder MRKT, and clusters of stands dedicated to spices, coffee and pizza. Artisan food producers reveal the rich histories of their foods, from butchers to bakers to fruit mongers, and will be holding masterclasses and tastings at the Caselli Daziari. And it’s not just Food Week: Milan is hosting 4 other events for the food sector at the same time: 4th-7th May was the Taste Festival; the 6th-10th is the first edition of Italian Gourmet with 17 haute cuisine ches; and from the 4th-11th of May, TuttoFood is holding the Seeds&Chips summit dedicated to food innovation.
From the table to the streets: a tasting tour through historic shops and trending street food
Street food will also be out campaigning against food waste with “Intensive Food Care”: a food truck/ambulance that transforms unsold food from local markets into new “survival kits.” On the 10th of May, restaurant owners in Via Marghera are holding a banquet with tastings from all their restaurants until 10pm. And no less important is Via Paolo Sarpi, organising “Sa(r)pore” among the historic Chinese shops.
The Feltrinelli Foundation in Porta Volta is holding interesting talks, along with readings, projections, films and workshops for children. One of the many photo exhibitions not to miss is FoodPeople, which explores changes in our eating habits over the last 150 years.
A new Expo? It needs innovation, sustainability and awareness
The schedule of events makes it instantly clear that there’s a desire to carry on the legacy of the 2015 Expo, securing Italy a central role in the food sector. However, the challenge is bigger than it appears. In order to be seen as a promoter of themes like conscious consumption and agricultural excellence, it needs to sharpen its focus on more complex topics like the right to food and the battle against food waste – real challenges for the future. To really become a new Expo, Milan Food City should be the mouthpiece for innovation that can become a driver of environmental sustainability