From its humble yet hope-filled beginnings in 1976, the Asian Christian Academy of India (ACA) has unswervingly sought to model Christian service in a multitude of endeavors by enabling men and women to emerge as leaders who care for, and contribute to, local communities through social service. Towards this end, over the past 35 years one of our core focus areas in the ACA campus at Hosur, Tamil Nadu, has been the development of a unique farm spread across several acres of fertile land.
Nestled amidst verdant surroundings, the ACA farm not only produces myriad crops and fruits today, but also houses cows, goats, fishes, ducks, and chicken. The dairy farm, compost facility, sewage treatment plant, and rainwater harvesting structures on-site endow self-sufficiency by providing the necessary fertilizer and water required to facilitate farming activities. In addition to this, we are currently working on perfecting aquaponics and hydroponics techniques to further enhance operations..
Since its inception, the promotion of vocational education has been an integral part of the holistic vision of ACA. Now, in a boost to that objective, the Asian Christian Culinary and Agricultural Sciences Institute (ACCASI) is all set to deliver relevant educational opportunities in this domain..
Given the keen and burgeoning global interest to understand the entire cycle of how food reaches our table from the farm, our diploma and certification programs are designed to blend training in small-scale agricultural techniques with culinary arts.
The Asian Christian Culinary and Agricultural Sciences Institute (ACCASI) is India’s first culinary school that integrates farming knowledge into its diploma and certification programs.
ACCASI was conceptualized based on our acute awareness and intrinsic belief in the mutually beneficial relationship that exists between culinary and farming education. Together, they help create a sustainable food system that supports local farmers, promotes healthy dietary habits, and builds stronger communities.
Therefore, by promoting food literacy the leadership at ACA aspires to realize the aforementioned aims. It is our understanding that utilizing locally sourced seasonal ingredients will pave the way for an increase in demand for such produce, eventually leading to the creation of a sustainable food system.
As an educational organization, we possess a proven track record of achievement in our programs ranging from K-12 to post-graduate and doctoral levels. Since our farm produce is a valuable source of food for our residential faculty and students, as a logical next step, we planned to integrate and utilize existing farm operations and culinary literacy as an educational tool.
To bring such out-of-the-box thinking to fruition was made possible in no small measure by the fact that we have been blessed with the most challenging aspect of establishing a culinary education program — a functioning farm. ACCASI is a natural progression in our ambition to maximize the potential of existing infrastructure to help deliver valuable educational experiences.
The farm-to-table concept revolves around purchasing fresh produce directly from local farmers and incorporating it into meals. Over time, humankind was drawn to the convenience of having access to varied foodstuffs from across the world throughout the year. As a consequence, farmers sought to generate higher profits faster by exploiting this trend, which resulted in an increase in food processing and use of pesticides in cultivation. However, in recent years there has been a growing shift towards the procurement and consumption of locally sourced, seasonal, and responsibly grown food.
Christ’s love for us compels us to follow him, and we display our love for Christ by loving our neighbor.
We approach one another in Christ-like humility, seeking to serve His interests by seeking the interests of others.
We seek to enjoy the freedom we have in Christ, not to live by the flesh but to use our God-given gifts for the service of others.
We seek to be a praying community, always pursuing the guidance and power of God to see his glory in our work.
We reflect on the inerrant Word of God as the authoritative foundation for our ultimate mission and vision.
VISION OF ACCASI
WHAT WE WISH TO BECOME, AND WHERE WE WANT TO GO IN THE FUTURE?
MISSION OF ACCASI
WHAT WE DO AND WHY?
DR. STEPHEN GEORGE
Director Of Culinary
Chef Mathew Stephenson has over 24 years of experience in the field of
education and the hotel industry. He won a gold medal in academics and a
bronze medal in culinary competitions from the South Indian Chefs
Association. He is currently pursuing a PhD in Tourism Management at
Madurai Kamaraj University and is a member of the board of studies for
universities/colleges in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. Chef Stephenson has coauthored two recipe books and has taught both food production theory and
has conducted practical classes. He is skilled in various culinary techniques
including sushi-making, cold cuts, carvings, and buffet setups. He is also an
expert in creating modernist kitchen designs, artistic works, culinary studios,
and has conducted research in the field of 3D food printing and food
styling/photography. In the course of his career, Chef Stephenson has worked
at several prestigious establishments including Crown Plaza, Leela Palace
Kempinski, and Le Royal Méridien. He was a sushi chef for the Carnival
Cruise Line in the United States and is a member of the Indian Federation of
Culinary Association and the World Association of Chefs Society.
MR. SRIDHAR K
Mr. Sridhar K is a seasoned agricultural expert with over 20 years of
experience in research, education, and awareness programs. He earned his
degree in 1996 from Agricultural College and Research Institute, Tamil Nadu
Agricultural University. He possesses expertise in converting farms to organic
operations, leading research and training programs in organic farming, and
providing technical advice on organic practices and sustainable packaging.
Mr. Sridhar is a master trainer certified by FAO-EU Integrated Pest
Management Program and has worked with non-profit organizations and
companies such as SL Associates, Cotton Blossom, ETC Consultants, and
Hindustan Lever, and Madras Christian College. He has participated in
seminars, workshops, and conferences and has published research findings
and presented papers on various topics in his field, including a case study
presented at the International Symposium on Biological Control of
Arthropods in Davos, Switzerland.
Mr. Gangadharan L has an extensive background as a chef, with over 18
years of experience to his credit. Throughout his career, he has worked in
restaurants in Bengaluru, Pune, Nilgiris, and also on an international cruise
liner. He is skilled in advance shaping of dough and baking products. He has
comprehensive knowledge of ingredients and techniques, and can prepare
high-quality food products with exceptional taste, texture, and appearance. In
addition, Mr. Gangadharan has served as a professor chef and was
responsible for training students in bakery and confectionary production. He
has also handled large party orders for bakery products, confectionary, and
desserts, as well as coordinating events such as the Saludos Mexico Festival
and Flavor Di Italia. He has received recognition for his achievements,
including a Centre of Excellence award for successfully completing the
Kitchen Foundation Module and a Certificate of Commendation for his
exemplary social responsibility. He holds a Diploma in Bakery &
Confectionery from 1999.
CHEF SHIVARAM R
Mr. Shivaram R is a seasoned hospitality professional with an impressive background. He obtained his Bachelor’s degree in Hotel Management from Christ University in Bengaluru, and later pursued an MBA from MKU University in Madurai. Shivaram worked for Carnival UK P&O Cruise lines, where he honed his culinary skills by working in the roast and fish section, as well as in the Sindhu Restaurant, a specialty restaurant under Chef Atul Kochar. In 2018, Shivaram joined PES University and Presidency College as their faculty, training the next generation of culinary professionals. In his last assignment, Shivaram was the Executive Chef at Terra Foods Co., where he was responsible for creating standard operating procedures for all brands, conducting research into retort food. Shivaram is also known for his live cook show on Facebook and YouTube, where he shares his expertise with a wider audience.