Global Cooksafe Coalition

Electric Connections: Member Update #1

Welcome to the first edition of Electric Connections – the new Global Cooksafe Coalition (GCC) update.

These updates, sent to your email box every couple of months, will give you insights into:

  • What GCC has been up to recently and our plans ahead
  • Recent policy initiatives and research in electrification in Australia
  • Information we’ve gleaned about what’s going on in the world of electric cooking equipment

BREAKING NEWS: We were delighted today to hear that the Victorian government has included induction cooktops in the Victorian Energy Upgrade (VEU) program for the first time, making the transition to electric cooking more affordable for Victorian households and small businesses. We were also pleased with the decision to start investigating the impact of banning gas connections to all new commercial building (except restaurants) and requiring that gas appliances in homes must be replaced with electric when they reach the end of their life. Nice work Victoria!

Events and updates

As you all know, it’s been a little over 12 months since our amazing launch in Sydney.

In the first six months of 2023 we built on our strong start and looked at increasing our team. A new global director, social media manager and Australia program manager were hired. We then set about holding a panel discussion event at Iceberg

s restaurant in Bondi to welcome new property partners and members and reinvigorate media attention. Masterchef judge Melissa Leong and journalist Brook Turner led a panel of experts in conversation at the event. Media coverage included Channel 10 news, Radio National, AB

C Radio news and The Sydney Morning Herald.

A week later team members attended two different political events on the same day on behalf of GCC. In Victoria, we organised chef Victor Liong to be part of Minister Lily’s D’Ambrosio’s announcement event about the new State legislation phasing gas out of new developments and government buildings.

On the same day (28 July), we stood next to the ACT Government as they launched their innovative Commercial Kitchen Trial which provides one-for-one funding for commercial kitchens seeking to electrify. A few days prior to this we were successful at having an Op-ed by our Chef Consultant, Luke Burgess, published in The Canberra Times.

Chef Alex Prichard at in the all-electric kitchen at Icebergs, Bondi

When the Sydney City Council voted to investigate planning controls which would require new residential developments in their area to be electric in August, we made sure that there were Sydney based chefs to weigh in on the benefits of electrification. GCC chef ambassador Neil Perry spoke to Channel 10 and The Sydney Morning Herald about the advantages of electric commercial kitchens.

In October, we participated in an event where the City of Melbourne launched Retrofitting Melbourne and the Green Building Council of Australia and the Property Council of Australia released Every Building Counts – For Local Government. We were there to publicly welcome new property partner, Scape Australia, and new government supporters, City of Melbourne and City of Sydney. We also hosted an induction cooking demonstration with the wonderful chef, Joseph Abboud from Rumi restaurant and shared the GCC’s vision with the 300 event attendees.

GCC Australia Program Manager Virginia Jones with chef Joseph Abboud and Nicholas Reece, Deputy Lord Mayor of Melbourne.

A month or so later, we worked with the SEC and the Victorian government in their induction cooking demonstration for community leaders and members of parliament featuring chef Helly Raichura from Enter Via Laundry. While in Melbourne we shot some wonderful chef and education videos that we’ll release soon! Stay tuned.

The Techy Stuff

B&S Commercial Kitchens have been working hard over the last year or so to perfect their range of freestanding commercial induction woks. After months of testing in their experience showroom, we are pleased that they are now available to be ordered. They’re currently being used GCC ambassador Palisa Anderson in her pop-up restaurant Love Child at the George Street Food Gallery in Sydney.

B&S freestanding induction wok units

Control Induction has also been kicking big goals in this area, especially with the new amazing set up at Spice Temple in Melbourne. We hear they have other exciting clients planning their conversions to electricity as well.

And still on woks, we’re currently in conversations with a large, well-known China-based manufacturer and exporter of high volume induction woks. The plan is for them to expand into Australia early next year with a Brisbane-based distributor and showroom. Please let us know if you’d like to hear more….

And, MKN electric grill is fully ready to replace gas chargrills so don’t believe anyone that tells you they can’t do a great steak on electric! The heating elements reach 300 degrees in 2 mins and direct intense heat sears with efficiency via the high grade stainless cavity. The main concept behind this is the “power block” core rods that deliver the energy direct to each grill rod.

A selection of recent research, media and reports

Blomberg – 8 November

Gas Stoves Mean Dangerous Pollution in Most Homes, Study Finds

The Fifth Estate – 24 October

Retrofit industry stand up – your time is now (and yours too local government)

Channel 9 – 22 August

Gas stoves: Health risks, childhood asthma links and the push to remove gas from Australian kitchens

The Conversation – 21 August

5 tips for getting off gas at home – for a cleaner, cheaper, healthier all-electric future

Washington Post – 6 August

Echoes of Australia’s gas ban will ring across four continents

Sydney Morning Herald – 2 August

The magnetic appeal of induction cooktops (plus other ways to go electric)

7am Podcast – 31 July

Cooking with gas is about to become a hate crime

SBS – 28 July

No longer cooking with gas: Could this state’s ban electrify the nation?

The Guardian – 27 July

Wholesale electricity prices down almost 60% a year on from Australia’s short-lived energy crisis

Green Magazine

Melissa Leong Adds Voice to Global Cooksafe Coalition

</p style=”margin left: 50 px;”>

What’s next

As 2023 draws to a close, our priorities look like this:

  • Organising the launch of the GCC in the UK in 2024. Our  UK Program Manager, Tushar Nair, started in August and the global team is working hard to sign up property partners, members and ambassador chefs on that side of the world. We are very fortunate to already have the global commitment of Lendlease and a number of international chefs onboard.
  • Building the reach of the Australia program with new property partners, members and possible events, and developing communications and policy initiatives that benefit existing partners and members.
  • Working in Australia with local cooktop and appliance makers to ensure that there is good supply of equipment and that industry concerns are addressed.
  • Working with local, state and commonwealth government in Australia for strong policy at all levels to ensure the equitable transition to electric cooking for businesses and residents.
  • We continue to work closely with our chef ambassadors and supporters to spread the electrification message, particularly through publicity opportunities and social media.