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The Waterford base of the GIY movementGrow HQ

Grow HQ To Be The Irish Base For Sustainability Plan, Chef’s Manifesto

The international sustainable plan comes to Waterford.


The Waterford café/shop has been chosen to be the Irish action hub for Chef’s Manifesto, an international initiative bringing chefs together to help implement the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) for 2030.

Here at Food&Wine, we are quite impressed by the amazing work the team has been doing over at Grow HQ, a sustainable food business located in Waterford City. It came as no surprise to us when the headquarters of the GIY movement (Grow It Yourself) ended up being shortlisted in no less than three categories at the Food&Wine Awards 2019, for Best Casual, Farm & Sea To Plate, and Outstanding Champion for JB Dubois. 

We are happy to learn today that the base for the TV show Grow Cook Eat has been chosen to be the Irish nerve centre for the Chef’s Manifesto, a global network of chefs working to implement the UN Sustainable Development Goals, using a practical action plan for their kitchens.

Grow HQ
Grow HQ

Supper Club

On Friday September 6th, a Wasted Supper Club organised at Grow HQ will act as the launch event for the initiative. During this dinner, which will be a part of the Harvest Festival in Waterford, 50 diners will enjoy a meal created entirely from food waste. HQ Head Chef JB Dubois and Chef’s Manifesto Ambassador Conor Spacey of Food Space will be in charge of creating this zero waste dinner, using the produce from the Grow HQ garden and taking production waste from other kitchens in the area. Tickets are priced €45 and include a 4-course meal plus welcome HQ Garden Cocktail. Guest speakers from the international movement will attend alongside Mark Diacono from Otter Farm & River Cottage and food writer Lia Leendertz.

A global initiative

The London action hub was founded two years ago in the Omved Gardens in Highgate. After the first year, the Chef’s Manifesto started to expand and events have been held in New York, LA, India, Nigeria, Copenhagen, Oslo, Rome, Stockholm, and a second UK hub has been set up in Bristol. For Chef’s Manifesto Ambassador Conor Spacey, it was very important to bring this to Ireland and involve chefs who could collaborate so that changes can be made in kitchens across the country.

“I have been looking for over a year at places to find somewhere suitable to host the Irish hub,” he says. “It’s important that the venue already has sustainable practices that are aligned to the Manifesto. After some research, it made sense to talk to the team in Grow HQ. What they are doing is fantastic and with their forward-thinking and food ethos, I asked them about getting involved. They came to London to see our hub and stayed for a few days while we were hosting a 3-day workshop and talks. I was so happy that they agreed to come on board.”

Created by more than 300 chefs from 36 countries all over the world, The Chef’s Manifesto is an action plan based on the idea that chefs can be powerful advocates for a better food future, inspiring people to make changes in their kitchens and communities. Some of The Chef’s Manifesto thematic areas are the use of ingredients grown with respect for the earth and the oceans, the protection of biodiversity and improved animal welfare, the celebration of local and seasonal food or the education on food safety and healthy diets. Understanding the value of natural resources and reducing waste is also at the core of this movement.

Future plans

In the coming year, GIY will be supporting the development of the Chef’s Manifesto in Ireland, with events at GROW HQ aimed at encouraging chefs in Ireland to get involved in implementing the action plan in their own kitchens. “We then plan to kick off our first workshops and talks in October,” Conor Spacey said.

The Chef’s Manifesto is the work of the SDG2 Advocacy Hub, an international initiative which brings together NGOs, advocacy groups, civil society, the private sector and UN agencies to share expertise, ideas, and to collaborate on campaigns to achieve Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 2, in particular to end world hunger by 2030. It sees chefs at the centre of tackling food system challenges such as undernutrition, food waste and soil degradation. It envisages a future where ingredients are grown with respect for the environment, where no good food goes to waste and where everyone, everywhere enjoys the nutritious meals they need to grow and thrive.

You can book tickets for the Wasted Supper Club here.