Identità Milano 2016

From 6 to 8 March the twelfth edition of the congress will celebrate The strength of freedom

To Bee or not to Bee, a dish signed by Cristina Bowerman - chef of Glass Hostaria in Rome - recalling a beehive. It's been chosen as the icon of Identità Milano's 12th edition, the international chef and pastrychef congress wich will take place at MiCo, in via Gattamelata, Milan, March 6-8 2016


2015 was the year of the World Fair in Milan, of an edition with a theme defined by six words, Feeding the planet, energy for life, which all the participants, from one end to the other, interpreted in the best possible way they could. Including us. Indeed, for six months we gave life to Identità Expo, a place where events, lunches and dinners took place in turn, with over 200 great Italian and foreign guest chefs, in a continuous confrontation that will not end with this event, as the importance and originality of the experience was too big.

It was a global event that strongly highlighted the fact that you can feed the world’s population even by fighting waste and the reckless use of the planet’s resources. Which are not endless: we no longer have an alibi. The world is limited, this is what we have and where we have to live. Let’s remember that in 1800 the world’s population didn’t reach one billion people, it was 978 million to be precise, and in 1950 it was little over two billion and a half, 2,521 million, while today, the data is from November 2015, we’ve reached 7.38 billion and by 2030, which is very close, we will be 8 and a half. The more we are, the bigger the stress on the globe.

The strength of freedom will be the theme of Identità Golose 2016 and goes beyond the most evident imperatives connected with consumption. With The strength of freedom we will focus the attention of the public opinion – and of our administrators and government - on the desire of knowledge and the curiosity that livened up every visitor at Expo 2015, launching a comprehensive discussion on the values of free creativity and free conviviality that are so strongly put to the test by the tensions affecting the world. Controlling consumption doesn’t mean you should no longer eat, in fact it means intensifying the cultural and technical exchanges that occur in kitchens and dining rooms all around the world.

While in 1862 German philosopher Ludwig Feuerbach wrote The mystery of sacrifice or Man is what he eats, a century and a half later the exact contrary seems to be established: Man is what he DOESN’T eat. Pay attention to this, more and more people identify themselves by what they refuse, no longer by what they prefer. And many of them would like to impose their choices onto others.

This is what we want to remember and reaffirm. Man is an omnivorous animal and cooking has always been a matter of life, culture, free product exchange, looking for new flavours, being influenced by the best that different civilisations and diets have to offer. We need to defend curiosity, the joy of something new, the dream of those who wish to innovate, of those who are open to something new and submit themselves to the judgement of the public, hoping to be appreciated. Let’s avoid becoming slaves to prejudgements, stupidity, frames of mind, all elements that mortify chefs’ creative genius (and not only theirs) and curb the tastes and desires of the clients.