Apr 18, 2022 - World

José Andrés' charity kitchen destroyed by Russian missile strike

Staff members of a local restaurant together with the organization World Central Kitchen prepare sandwiches
Staff members of a local restaurant in Lviv, Ukraine, together with the organization World Central Kitchen prepare sandwiches for refugees and Ukrainian territorial troops. Photo: Mykola Tys/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

A restaurant run by celebrity chef José Andrés’ nonprofit World Central Kitchen in Kharkiv, Ukraine, was destroyed by a Russian missile strike, WCK CEO Nate Mook confirmed via Twitter on Saturday.

Why it matters: The UN warned last month that Ukraine's food supply chain is "falling apart" under stress from Russia's invasion. UN World Food Program chief David Beasley said Sunday that there is "no question" Russian forces are using food as a weapon of war in Ukraine.

The big picture: “An update I hoped I’d never have to make. I’m at a @WCKitchen restaurant in Kharkiv, where less than 24 hours ago I was meeting with their amazing team. Today, a missile stuck. 4 staff were wounded. This is the reality here — cooking is a heroic act of bravery," Mook tweeted, alongside a video showing destroyed buildings and burned cars behind him.

  • Mook added in the video that although no one was killed inside the restaurant, "we are told that one person was killed in this strike.” Injured staff members were taken to the hospital, he said.
  • In an update Sunday, Mook tweeted that the injured staff members were "doing well" and that the restaurant's team was already moving its food products and undamaged equipment to a new kitchen location in Kharkiv.
  • "To everyone caring and sending good wishes to the team in Kharkiv, thank you, the injured are fine, and everyone is ready and willing to start cooking in another location," Andrés tweeted Sunday.
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