Simple Food, Healthy Eating


How times flies... the 18th consecutive year of Tastes of the World Chef Culinary Conference, will once again take place on the beautiful campus of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, on June 10-15, 2012. The number 18 is especially auspicious for many Asian cultures; for us, we anticipate the best year yet!

In celebration, we will feature plenary sessions by some of the nation's leading experts and innovators in the field, as well as numerous presentations/workshops by a number of accomplished chefs.

Based on your feedback, our theme this year: Simple Food, Healthy Eating, Part 2, will revisit many simple to prepare and casual dishes, with plenty of flavor and a reverence for incorporating locally produced, seasonal ingredients. The result - food that not only tastes good but is good for you, as well. More than ever, students on our campuses are looking for authentic and freshly prepared food that embraces environmental responsibility, while keeping healthfulness in mind.

We will explore the regional foods of America along with influences from Asia, Europe, Latin America, and the Mediterranean. We want food to be a vehicle that creates excitement, builds community and offers great value as well.

Talking about excitement, building community and providing great value, as an added bonus, we will examine foods produced from food trucks and food carts as this is quickly becoming a major trend on campuses.

I had the pleasure of hearing chef Roy Choi, food truck guru and creator of the fame Kogi BBQ food trucks, speak about why his food trucks have taken the nation by the storm. He will be a guest presenter you won't want to miss. Chef Roy Choi will share what's next on his menu, along with other chef owners.

UMass's annual Tastes of the World Chef Culinary Conference is highly regarded as the place to be for volume food service operators such as campus chefs, to learn more about world cuisines, food cultures, and flavor trends, in a supportive encouraging environment. The conference showcases the gold standards of college cuisines and hones the culinary skills of attendees.

As always, we expect to host an impressive entourage of experts, as well as some of the finest members of Johnson and Wales University and The Culinary Institute of America, who will share their knowledge and oversee many workshop sessions and demonstrations. Of course, the conference will culminate with an ACF-sanctioned team competition, one of the most popular events. Let's see how close we can come this year to awarding 18 Gold Medals!

Please visit this site often as it will be updated regularly. Mark your calendar and plan to register early, as many of the events become "sold out" as the conference date approaches.


Ken Toong

Ken Toong
Executive Director and Chair