SPOTLIGHT: CHEF NJATHI KABUI

Listen to Chef Kabui on a Radio interview with WUNC North Carolina Public Radio.

December 20, 2016

Kenyans globally have accomplished a great deal in many different fields of endeavor. By bringing their careers and achievements to the forefront, we hope that we will motivate coming generations of Kenyans to keep reaching for the skies.

In our inaugural spotlight article, we are honored to feature Chef Njathi Kabui an organic food chef and food activist who resides in the Raleigh-Durham area, North Carolina, USA. Chef Kabui will tell us more about food activism and justice in addition to the organic food movement. (Chef Kabui’s website: http://organicsandsound.com)

  1. Chef, you have been featured on Inooro fm,  WCOM 103.5 fm, WUNC-NPR both in the Raleigh-Durham area and you are also well-known in the food activism circles. Can you tell us what being a food activist entails?

A food activist is a person who starts from the premise that food is not a privilege but a human right. No two food activists are the same as it all depends of where one started their journey. I learnt that inequality does not only come in terms of money but can also be encountered in terms of  culture. Simply by making food available to those living in under-served communities will not guarantee any significant improvement in the health conditions of the group in question. A new empowering culture needs to be created to replace the previous culture.

A food activist has to do a multitude of things all at once. I engage in some events just to celebrate and inspire a group by preparing food. Other times a food activist has to be a teacher. It does not help to simply condemn a broken food system without offering an alternative. There are also times that a food activist has to be a warrior. In any struggle for justice, there are always winners and losers. Junk food is a very big part of the food industry here in America and it makes a lot of money for the industry. There are some companies that can literary go war to protect their market share. Sometimes a food activist has to be a “soothsayer” and you have to learn a lot of different things that may appear connected with food. But a food activist has to be very close to the group he is associated with and must learn as much as possible about its changing habits. In other words, one needs to have a finger on the pulse of the said society. Only then can one be relevant and legitimate in his or her work.

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