The effects of overconsumption and habitat destruction on the food supply are most evident when it comes to seafood, but produce shortages are actually a very real threat. According to Pierre Gagnaire, one of the biggest names in chefdom, demand for top-quality fruits and veggies is also on the rise, and that will ultimately drive their prices to untenable heights. Whence this inflated demand? All those international minichains of fine-dining restaurants.
Like, for example, Gagnaire’s, which includes a couple of places in Paris and offshoots in Hong Kong and London. He knows firsthand about the strains that these new spots are putting on the purveyors of top ingredients:
My suppliers are used to working for maybe three or four restaurants but now they are getting calls all the time from new restaurants opening up.
All the more reason for these places to source their ingredients locally, right? As long as they open in areas where food actually grows—that is, not in countries like Japan or Australia. Otherwise, the world might be better off if celeb chefs confined their expansionist tendencies to cookbooks and TV shows.