The “Caravan Bon Appetite” surprised some child evacuees of the Fukushima disaster being hosted at a local school when they arrived with Santa, Christmas carolers, a clown, presents and a gourmet dinner in tow. Around 360 meals and 200 snacks were prepared in the French Embassy in Japan, loaded and brought to the city of Koriyama to be served there.
It was an initiative started by French chefs in Japan in response to the earthquake and tsunami disaster that left a lot of people homeless. The plan was to help provide food for the victims and started in April 2011, where they would travel daily with a different chef preparing meals for the numerous victims. This time, the group prepared something different with scalloped potatoes, buttered vegetables and roast beef to dish out, giving them opportunity to expand their taste. Chef Christophe Paucod said, “It’s a different flavor for their palates. For many it is the first time they have tasted French cuisine.”
With thousands of people still rendered homeless because of the danger of high radiation levels within their towns, many Fukushima residents have fled to relatives living in other prefectures, while others remained in the temporary housing the government has provided for them. Such dire situations can cause diseases and even mental illnesses such as depression, and it is for these kinds of people who the group has organized such an activity. One of the organizers, Patrick Hochster said, “It’s a special Caravan Bon Appetite because it’s Christmas.”