BACKGROUND / Professional and educational background
Olivier Roellinger graduated from high school in 1974, before starting a Math preparatory class for Arts et Métiers in 1975-1976. In 1979, he finished his CAP Cuisine, then opened the first Maison de Bricourt in his childhood home with his wife and mother in 1982. He was awarded two Michelin stars in 1988, and opened L’hôtel des Rimains. In 1994, he was named Chef of the Year in France and Europe by Gault & Millau, and given 4 toques 19.5/20 Gault & Millau. That same year, he published his book with Rouergue publishing. He attended the “Etonnants Voyageurs” litterature festival with Michel Le Bris in 2004 to present his book “Saveurs du Monde d’Olivier Roellinger”. He then opened the “Epices Roellinger” warehouse in 2005, meant as a research and creation center for ground spices, herbs and aromatics. He was named Chevalier de la Légion d’Honneur that same year, and published “Une Cuisine Contemporaine” with Flammarion.
He was finally elected, in 2005 again, Chef of the Year by his peers, and delegate of Relais & Châteaux for the West region.
In 2006, he won three Michelin stars and opened the Cuisine Corsaire school. He published “Trois étoiles de mer” with Flammarion in 2008 and directed the eponymous film. He was elected Vice-President of the Relais & Châteaux International Organization and opened his third “Epices Roellinger” warehouse rue Saint-Anne in Paris (2010). In 2011, he was named Commandeur des Arts et des Lettres. In 2012, he published “Epices & Roellinger” for Imagine & Co Publishing, and started the O. Roellinger contest for the protection of fishing resources.
In 2013, he published “Roellinger le Cuisinier Corsaire” his biography, for Imagine & Co. He was reelected Vice-President of the Relais & Châteaux International Tables. On November 18, he presented the Relais & Châteaux manifesto to UNESCO for “a better world through Table and hospitality”, and became a Member of the Royal Yacht Squadron in England. He was then joined by his son Hugo Roellinger in 2016, who took over the Maisons de Bricourt kitchens. He opened that same year the Ferme du Vent et des Bains Celtiques.
Finally, he launched in 2017 a line of cosmetics called “Bains Celtiques-Roellinger” and launched his call for the “Right to Good Eating”.
ACHIEVEMENT / What does the project/initiative/startup/company you will be presenting at the Positive Economy Forum consist of?
In his Relais & Châteaux manifesto, Olivier Roellinger argues for the conservation of cuisines from around the world. Relais & Châteaux establishments are both sentinels and guardians of what regions hold most precious, all the while opening a path for a cuisine that resonates with places, where the sincerity of men and women who make it remains the golden rule. He wishes to partners with farmers and fishermen around the world to protect humanity’s pantry, biodiversity and animal species, vegetables, fruit, and seasons.
LOCALISATION / Dans quelle ville, pays, région du monde menez-vous vos actions ?
This initiative involves everyone, and must therefore be implemented worldwide.
IMPACT / Quel est l’impact économique, social, politique, environnemental positif… de cette action, projet, initiative, entreprise?
While a privileged part of the population has access to education to taste and quality products, the majority has to face a consuming landscape dictated by mass distribution. This fracture has to do with social discrepancies, but is also deeply cultural. It is linked to an idea of the place that food should hold in life, to a culture of taste built since the youngest age, to a know-how. Another fracture separates the agricultural sector from consumers. Massive industrialization of French agriculture has led to the following paradox: the majority of farmers, having to face intensive agriculture, cannot feed their fellow citizens.
With this tribune, Olivier Roellinger argues for a right to good eating for all citizens, which is neither a luxury not a utopia: it is possible and even imperative to take concrete action to promote an agriculture that is sustainable for its producers and consumers, for humans and for the land. Numerous studies (from the INRA at the farm in Bec Hellouin in Normandy, or the Afterres2050 scenario from the Solagro agency) prove that peasant farming, reducing chemicals and using traditional seeds, based on agroecological principles rather than productivity, can feed a growing population with better quality products by reducing the ecological footprint of our cultures on the environment, along with health hazards.
CITATION / Une phrase, citation, maxime qui vous ressemble
For a delicious revolution: “Good Eating cannot be a privilege anymore but a right to all”.