One World Cafe is a restaurant in Salt Lake City, Utah where you can pick your own portions, eat organic food, and pay whatever you want for it. Owner Denise Cerreta is to thank.
“By encouraging people to savor the meal, Ms. Cerreta is attempting to help people see the value of food as more than a mere consumable but rather, as a glue and a catalyst for healthy people, relationships and communities. Customers are able to seat themselves in a relaxed atmosphere that is condusive to conversation; opposite to the usual public dining experience of isolation. Because our customers choose their own prices, their portions tend to be more mindful and reflect that they will actually want to eat, with the result being little or no food waste. We’ve realized that this makes more food available and we expect this will make the concept exportable and adoptable worldwide.
Philosophy meets business through her desire to pay her workers a living wage, as well provide volunteer options for those who would prefer a “hand up” rather than a hand out. For every hour someone gives to our foundation, they can receive a voucher for a full meal, and children under 8 can eat with a parent on the same vouncher. Plus, there is always a complimentary staple dish that everyone can eat regardless of means. Denise and the staff knew the model was successful on the day that there were several people eating, all of whom had volunteered earlier in the week and had redeemed their vouchers. But all were eating anonymously and with dignity.”
She started the One World Everybody Eats Foundation that is committed to putting a community kitchen in every city. There’s a “Spirit in Business – Guide for Starting a Community Kitchen” available for download at her website. It serves as a How-To guide as well as a testimony for other businesses to become more sustainable and redefine what profit means without sacrificing it. Another couple in Denver, Colorado has opened SAME: So All May Eat. Spread the word and love: One World Everybody Eats YouTube.