Artisan-built pizza oven supplier, Valoriani UK, has used October’s Pizza Month as the platform to launch a corporate social responsibility-focused initiative that will see the USA’s National Pizza Day become the UK’s ‘Random Acts of Kindling Day’.
On Saturday February 9 next year, Preston-based Valoriani UK is calling for as many mobile wood-fired oven operators as possible to take their oven out and cook pizza for those in need, working in conjunction with a national or local charity that supports the homeless, or with their local soup kitchen.
Alternatively, they could do as Valoriani UK is suggesting to restaurants and eateries that also have wood-fired ovens – staging a fundraising day that sees food lovers being asked to donate some money in return for pizza, or adding a voluntary donation to their bill.
However the wood-fired community gets involved, it will be directly supporting those living on the streets and showing care and concern for others.
The Random Acts of Kindling Day initiative has been launched to mark Valoriani UK’s 15-year anniversary of pioneering wood-fired pizza ovens in the UK. Founder Andrew Manciocchi introduced wood-fired pizza ovens to Britain in 2003, when critics said inspiring chefs and homeowners to cook with wood was a hopeless cause. Valoriani ovens have since been adopted by everyone from The River Café to Jamie Oliver and from Gwyneth Paltrow to the Beckhams and are to be found somewhere within every town or city.
February is an ideal time for mobile pizza oven operators to show their social conscience and highlight their ethics, with the weather likely to be seasonably cold, presenting added issues for those on the streets. Mobile caterers are also likely to have fewer engagements in the diary, whilst restaurants will be looking for ways to generate business at a quieter time of year.
Valoriani UK’s initiative is sure to tick the boxes of Millennial consumers wishing to support those who support others. Involving them as co-creators on the day, through voluntary donations or devoting time to help serve up or deliver pizzas, will build even more brand loyalty for the street food, mobile caterers and eateries that take part.
Valoriani UK will be taking one of its own mobile ovens out and will be promoting the initiative throughout the next four months, in the build-up to Random Acts of Kindling Day on February 9. It aims to make Random Acts of Kindling Day an annual event and is urging the wood-fired community to get involved and demonstrate its ethics.
Valoriani UK’s Dino Manciocchi says: “Valoriani has a long history of feeding those in need. Following World War II, the Italian government turned to Valoriani and asked it to use its unrivalled skills in working with refractory clay to build wood-fired pizza ovens for poor families in the south of the country, who needed food in order to survive. The wood ovens allowed these families to bake their own bread and so have a means to feed themselves. Our Random Acts of Kindling Day initiative has echoes of this period from Valoriani’s past and should make a difference to some of the most vulnerable people around Britain.”