Sustainability runs through the whole Alchemist experience.
Briefly tell us how you work with sustainability at Alchemist
Sustainability runs through the whole Alchemist experience, with many dishes communicating environmental and animal welfare issues. It is also much of what we communicate internally to the staff in both presenting and preparing our menu. At a practical level, it means that we go as far as possible to source organic and biodynamic produce. We sort all our waste into 16 categories, with three for different kinds of plastic. Our biodegradable waste is collected for biogas.
Does the staff meet producers and suppliers to gain in-depth knowledge of certain products and producers?
Yes, both our front of house team and our chefs regularly visit local producers. Perhaps once a month in different groups.
Does the restaurant have a staff policy, including, for example, gender equality, discrimination, alcohol, and drugs?
We have a gender and diversity policy, a policy on sexual discrimination and bullying, and a zero-tolerance policy against abusive acts. We do not allow drugs on the premises and do not allow drinking on the premises during working hours (except for designated staff handling wine).
What requirements do you have on the fish and seafood you use at the restaurant?
We strive to not use redlisted or endangered fish and seafood. We use a lot of otherwise discarded seafood — cod’s eyes, tongue, and jaw; langoustine shells and “broken” langoustines; and king crab tails and roe to make statements on food waste in the marine industry.
How do you work with food waste? Do you have guidelines and goals in regards to waste?
We are at the moment working together with a PhD-student who will spend 6 months at the restaurant monitoring our food waste and working with us in minimizing it and recycling it as far as possible in the restaurant. A lot of our dishes utilize waste from other dishes, for example, the tongue from the lamb’s head we use for the “lamb’s brain” dish is used for the “tongue kiss” dish. And the eyes, tongue, and throat from the cod’s head are used for our dish “1984” while the jaw is used for “plastic fantastic”. Also, some of the waste from the restaurant is used in our project for the homeless: JunkFood, which serves 400 meals a day to Copenhagen’s homeless.