August 8, 2022

Who Runs The World? Woman In Culinary!


Though female chefs are not all that uncommon, there’s still a certain fascination with what it means to be a woman in a male-dominated environment in one of the most cut-throat industries. Being a chef comes with many challenges and hardships but it’s no match for our resilient woman in culinary who are reinventing the culinary landscape.

With its mission to provide mentoring and guidance to women from all walks of life who aspire to be exceptional within the culinary arts, Chef Pinky started the Women in Culinary Committee in 2019. The committee then became SA Chef’s Women in Culinary – a subcommittee of the SA Chefs Association formed to provide culinary support and motivation with chef discussions and tips for female chefs in South Africa. 

The committee stands to acknowledge and create awareness about what exactly goes on in the kitchens of South Africa,” says Chef Pinky. Recognising the inequality of women within the culinary landscape, this driving force aims to stop and prevent the improper treatment of women in their work environment. “SA Chef’s Women in Culinary is about creating a safe space for women and the LGBTQ+ community, to reach out to us in a confidential and private environment,” Chef Pinky adds.

Some of the committee’s most prominent services are aimed at empowering women in the food service industry through leadership programmes focused on networking, providing support, motivation, collaboration and fostering self-confidence both personally and professionally.  

With Sarah Gray as the Head Chairperson of the committee, they are taking on what has always been known as a male-dominated industry and reinventing it by highlighting and profiling the striving women in the culinary industry by showcasing their skills and talents while creating role models for South Africa’s young and future women chefs. 

Sarah Gray

In a world fighting for women’s equality the stigma should be broken that all kitchens should be run by alpha males and this is exactly what the committee is trying to achieve. The Women in Culinary Committee really creates a safe hub for those who are dealing with depression, mental health issues, sexual assault or abuse and discrimination within the kitchen. 

Through networking sessions, leadership training and initiating SA Chef Women In Culinary awards, the committee strives to create a better future for all the little girls who dream about becoming a master chef.