José Andrés was named the winner of the Basque Culinary World Prize 2020 for his inspiring work with World Central Kitchen (WCK).
The jury, composed by the world’s most impressive chefs and chaired by Joan Roca, said Andrés symbolised the efforts made by chefs around the world to the challenges posed by the crisis and embodied the collaborative action needed during such testing times. When the pandemic began to take over the entire world in March, Andrés and the WCK team moved to ensure that those people in need continued to eat at this difficult time.
While accepting the award, Andrés said the award was not for himself but for the entire WCK team: “So many chefs from all over the world have contributed to the work of WCK.” Andrés will split the €100,000 prize among 10 chefs who worked decisively for the community. “With the blessing of the BCC and the judging panel, I would like to share this prize with all the organisations being recognised today to help them continue their growth to become brilliant non-profits,” Andrés said.
Joan Roca said: “In view of this year’s exceptional circumstances, our responsibility had to rise to the current challenges. After an intense process of reflection, we wanted to focus the award on the challenge facing the entire planet due to COVID-19– a challenge that chef José Andrés has faced with courage, bravery and a titanic effort.”
“His admirable dedication to work, his ability to deal with humanitarian crises and his present and evident leadership have served as a source of inspiration for many people who have joined its World Central Kitchen initiative around the world. It’s a project that has also made visible the work of volunteers who have turned gastronomy into a strong social tool.”
The BWCP jury is made up of:
Joan Roca (El Cellar de Can Roca), Ferrán Adrià (El Bulli Foundation), Mauro Colagreco (Mirazur), Gastón Acurio (Acurio Restaurants), Manu Buffara (Manu), Dan Barber (Blue Hill Farm), Eneko Atxa (Azurmendi), Dominique Crenn (Atelier Crenn), Andoni Luis Aduriz (Mugaritz), Enrique Olvera (Pujol), Trine Hahnemann (Hahnemanns Køkken) and Yoshihiro Narisawa (Les Créations de Narisawa).