Whilst I was in Holland to visit my relatives, I read an interesting article in “De Volkskrant” (Holland’s “Guardian” equivalent) about “greening” of the fast food sector.
The article had been written by the journalist Loethe Olthuis who turned out to have been a fellow student of mine many, many moons ago, at The Hague Institute of Hospitality Management.
After graduating, Loethe started writing about food, the environment and sustainability (her parents were both journalists, so a case of “de appel valt niet ver van de boom” = blood being thinner than water?).
This “greening”, or not as is the case – according to Loethe most of the large fast food operators only pay lip-service to sustainability – was also discussed in The Times last week in the article “Big Mac, hold the CO2”.
Although I am not sure that many fast food customers have concern for the environment at the top of their list of priorities, it is my opinion that the big companies such as MacDonald’s, KFC and Burger King nevertheless have a duty to use their size and buying power to influence the supply chain and to educate their customers.
“DankU“, www.danku.com, is a Dutch fast food concept that uses only organic products; so far they have got two outlets, one in Antwerp and one in New York, so there must be scope to develop a fast food product that is fast and good.
One thing on their menu that particularly caught my eye was their “biologische kroket”, organic croquette. This is a typical Dutch snack, made of a (usually meat) ragout type filling encased in breadcrumbs and then deepfried, which can be delicious if it is well made. As students, we would often stop for a “broodje kroket” (croquette in a soft breadroll) at Dungelmans, a first class butcher in The Hague who still make their own kroketten, saussage rolls and pasties.
I have a Dutch friend in London, who shall remain nameless, who brings back boxes of frozen “kroketten” , or their bite size equivalents called “bitterballen” , which she serves as novel snacks with drinks.
Perhaps Danku will come to London next? I will let you know and don’t forget you heard about fast good here first!