Institut equalita e.V.

Sustainability in professional Cooking

Institut equalita has carried out a Leonardo da VInci Project from 2013 to 2015 under the title "Development and transfer of training courses and materials for sustainability in professional cooking" with partners from Austria, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Germany, Italy, Slovenia and United Kingdom.


The concept of sustainable development is usually specified by the formulation of environmental, economic and social goals. In the field of nutrition the aspect of health has a central importance and is therefore considered a separate fourth dimension. Especially in catering can sustainability be made tangible and concrete to grasp. The implementation of a "sustainable cuisine" places new challenges on cooks which are not conveyed in the usual professional training. There is a great need for training especially with using new and innovative methods like eLearning.

The result of the educational offer analysis in various EU countries, carried out by a former LdV Partnership "Sustainability for professional cooking", was that no adequate educational offers for the qualification of cooks in the "sustainable cuisine" exist in Europe. On the other hand all interviewed researches and experts expressed need for innovative and progressive learning methods in the sustainability concepts.

The project consortium is composed of various organizations representing the important stakeholders of the regarding branches, eg. educational institutes, involved in teaching and training, to organisations involved in organic and sustainable food certification, promotion and application in gastronomy and public catering segment. Austrian and German partners with experience in training for sustainable cooking will have leading roles in the partner consortium. Transferring partners are educational institutes in 5 EU countries (Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Italy, Slovenia and United Kingdom) who will import, transfer and adapt the eLearning course and learning materials according to their national conditions, requirements and needs.

Objectives and Target Groups

The aim of the project is to create eLearning training curriculum offering qualifications in sustainability for professional cooks and managers in catering/gastronomy sector. The course with 15 eLearning units will be developed and adapted to five partner countries, according to their specific national conditions and requirements and translated in their languages. This approach follows the results of the LdV Partnership on “Sustainable Cooking”.

Project target groups are teachers at tourism and HoReCa educational institutions, decision-makers in public administration, human resource managers in gastronomy and touristic enterprises, cooking personnel in public catering (mainly schools and kindergartens), institutions of adult education.


The result of the project will be the comprehensive eLearning course “SusCooks” containing 15 learning units combined into 5 thematic modules. The learning units will cover the basics of the four pillars of sustainability - ecological, economic, social and health aspects.

Furthermore, the project will initiate and promote European cooperation between vocational training institutions and gastronomy, tourism and public catering sectors for the development, dissemination and implementation of training modules and key competences on sustainability.


The partnership consisted of eight institutions from seven countries. Coordinator of the project is Institut equalita.  "Gutessen consulting“ (GEC) is an Austrian consultancy service-provider with focus on sustainable nutrition and catering. The German partner Ökomarkt e.V. has an excellent knowledge on how to make the food supply systems for schools und kindergartens as well as for universities more sustainable.

Slow Food Brno is an Czech organization, involved in a national educational project where it runs an education programmes and have begun the education of over 50 catering staff. One of the priorities of the project is the competency development of staff working in the kitchens. The Bulgarian College of Business Administration provides Vocational Training in two subjects. In Tourism Economics our training focuses mostly on the practical part of the training of students. .

The Slovenian institution ERUDIO combines former organizations who have more than 15 years of experience in mostly formal education of adults with a wide spectrum of programs – 7 highschools, 7 college and 2 faculty programs - one of them Heritage and culinary tourism. The Italian Centro Libero di Analisi e Ricerche (CLAR) offers vocational and educational training especially in touristic and agro-environmental fields. Soil Association is the UK's leading organic organization covering issues like education, policy, technical support and certification of organic food.

Project Video