David Chang
Chef & Owner, Momofuku Restaurants
02:14

What are animal rights?

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"It's just something you have to see. You can really see animals happier."

David Chang

David Chang is a Korean-American chef who is known for his unique combination of Asian food and French technique. After graduating Trinity College, Chang worked briefly in the financial services before embarking upon his career as a chef. Chang attended the French Culinary Institute and opened his first restaurant, Momofuku Noodle Bar, in Manhattan's East Village in 2003. Momofuku proved a resounding success; food critics as well as customers loved the restaurant's signature dishes, such as the Asian burrito and the kimchi and pork consomme.

In 2006, Chang opened his a second restaurant, Momofuku Ssam Bar. Chang was honored as both GQ and Bon Appetit's 2007 Chef of the Year. Chang is unapologetic about his food. "We do not serve vegetarian-friendly items," Chang has said. "Vegetarians are a pain in the ass as customers."

Transcript

 

Question: What are animal rights?

 

David Chang:  I don’t know if you can articulate it.  It’s just something you have to see.  You can really see animals happier.  And that’s what makes it even more difficult when you consume them. 

You want to make sure that the person that grew the animal, the animal itself is respected. 

And the food that you’re cooking, you want to make sure that that cook understands that process – that a life was taken for someone else. 

To say that it’s not as valuable as another, that’s not for me to decide. 

But for my part, I want us to do the best as possible.  I would say almost all of our proteins that we get are sustainably raised.  We’re trying.  It’s hard.  It’s really hard to source that out and be able to get it right; and to get it affordable too.

Again I can’t remember the book, but everything in the world has risen in price.  But the one thing that people want to stay the same is the cost of protein, and beef, and chicken.  But you have to pay the price if it’s going to be grown the right way because it’s not cheap.  

There is a reason why people eat KFC or McDonald’s.  It’s because, if you want to eat well, you have to choose where you want to eat.  And to eat properly, growing stuff is not cheap because there’s a lot of love and there’s a lot of labor involved. 

There are now pellets given to these birds to make it grow faster, or hormones or whatever. 

At the end of the day, you can taste a big difference too.  Whether it’s a chicken grown from Pennsylvania on a diet of milk-fed ____________, it’s going to be more delicious.  No question it’s going to be more delicious than your run of the mill supermarket chicken.

 


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