Jewish Chef and Cookbook Author Appointed to UN World Food Programme to Help Raise Awareness About Global Hunger Crisis
by Shiryn Ghermezian
The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) announced on Thursday that 20-year-old Jewish chef, cookbook author, and television and social media personality Eitan Bernath has been appointed as the organization’s high level supporter to help raise awareness for international food insecurity and the current global hunger crisis.
WFP, one of the world’s largest humanitarian organizations, works in over 120 countries and territories to bring food to people in need, including those displaced by conflict and natural disasters. As a high level supporter for WFP, Bernath will use his knowledge of food and cooking to help his over 10 million followers across various social media platforms “understand how issues like the climate crisis and gender inequality exacerbate global hunger,” he told The Algemeiner. He added that he will also “be using other opportunities across different verticals, including television, to further amplify the importance of the World Food Programme in the global humanitarian landscape.”
The New York native is the the CEO of Eitan Productions, the principal culinary contributor for The Drew Barrymore Show and the youngest member of the Food Council at City Harvest, New York City’s largest food rescue organization. His social media accounts garner three billion views annually from over 350 million people around the world.
Bernath is now the WFP’s only Jewish high level supporter, according to the organization’s website. Other prominent figures who serve as WFP goodwill ambassadors and advocates include fashion designer Michael Kors, chef Andrew Zimmern, actress Kate Hudson and the singer The Weeknd.
“Over 40 percent of the global population lives in areas that are highly vulnerable to climate extremes, where more frequent and intense weather events are destroying land, livestock and crops, and therefore jeopardizing food security. When hit by shocks, it is women who often eat last and least – sacrificing for their families,” Bernath told The Algemeiner. He added that it’s “an incredible honor” to work with WFP to help raise awareness about the issue of food insecurity around the world.
“It’s easy to take the ability to put food on the table for granted. It’s easy to take knowing where your next meal is coming from for granted. One in nine people worldwide still do not have enough to eat,” he explained. “I connect with the root of the mission on so many levels – especially as somebody whose day job is spent in the kitchen. It’s especially such an honor to join this distinguished group of fellow supporters and ambassadors as a member of the Jewish community – and to be able to represent those values and principles on a global stage and be a positive example for the impact a Jew can have in the world.”
When asked about representing the Jewish community with this new designation, Bernath told The Algemeiner, “I always recognize that there is weight and responsibility in representing my Jewish heritage and identity every time I am in front of an audience – whether it be on TikTok, The Drew Barrymore Show, or representing an organization. I hope that being a good example of what a Jew is can shine a positive light amidst the prevalence of antisemitism.”
Barron Segar, president and CEO of World Food Program USA, said in a released statement, “We’re thrilled to have Eitan join our global effort to solve hunger. It’s critical that young people bring their energy and ideas to this movement. Eitan is the perfect person to help us fight for a more equitable future, where no one goes without food, no matter where they live.”