Chef Matthew W. Fast is a Culinary Instructor and Wellness Educator. He is also the owner and founder of MWF Company, located in Los Angeles, CA. He received his Chef’s education and degree from the California Culinary Academy in San Francisco, California. His life’s passion involves fighting child obesity and the health challenges that result from poor eating habits and living a sedentary lifestyle.
Thus, “Chef Matthew,” as his students refer to him, started the MWF Company. MWF Company is guided by 3 fundamental principles: Movement, Wellness, and Food.
Matthew Fast grew up in a small town in Michigan, where the kitchen was always the hub during family gatherings. His mother and grandmother loved teaching him how to cook at 5 years old. His grandfather would teach Matthew how to grow and eat tomatoes with salt shaker right in the middle of their garden. As a young adult, Matthew began working in the food services industry in the Midwest. However, this was not enough to fulfill his passion to learn and become an expert in culinary arts. He eventually moved his life into the West coast to launch a professional career as a chef in San Francisco, working at different restaurants and meeting the many families who frequently ate there.
After many years of working in the restaurant setting, he noticed that his patrons did not have a full understanding of the nutritional values of the food they consumed. Food they thought was healthy was very much the opposite. Matthew quickly realized that the food and wellness education people possessed was associated with many misconceptions regarding their choice of a healthy option. This is why child obesity exists. They learn to eat high caloric foods that offer little nutritional value in inappropriate portion sizes.
For Chef Matthew, the best route to educate and modify the behavior of food choice and education was to start with the kids of his community. He transitioned his career from cooking for people to cooking with children. Children are our future leaders of America. The sooner they learn about appropriate habits in wellness, the healthier and stronger adults they will be when consciously making educated decisions regarding their healthy lifestyle.
Chef Matthew began this specific mission working as a Culinary Arts & Wellness Educator for the City and County of San Francisco Recreation and Parks and several Catholic Schools in San Francisco also. He taught culinary arts and nutrition classes and summer camps for the San Francisco community. His culinary arts curriculum became so successful and in high demand that his programs created waiting lists from students to participate. Over the course of 5 years, Chef Matthew influenced the eating habits of more than 2,000 kids each and every single year.
By the end of Chef Matthew’s culinary classes, kids express a greater interest in trying new fruits and vegetables and a desire to keep fresh produce in their homes. An even greater outcome is finding out that parents start eating more fresh produce as a result of their children’s new culinary awareness. Thanks to Chef Matthew’s influence, children come home with enough knowledge and excitement about nutrition and physical activity to influence their parents’ awareness of what food they are purchasing, what is going into their own bodies, and how physical activity plays a role in their overall health.
“Food brings families, people, communities, countries and the world together” says Chef Matthew. “Food can trigger so many emotions and even re-live a happy memory from their past. Food is amazing, and the possibilities of how they can bring people together are endless.”
In 2015, Chef Matthew decided to move to the Los Angeles area to further his quest in positively educating and influencing kids about their food choices. Learning about food and eating healthily could be both fun and contagious to their family and friends. He currently works with different organizations as a Culinary Arts and Wellness educator and plans on exceeding what he accomplished in San Francisco.
Chef Matthew started the MWF Company so that he could contribute to the lives of children by influencing new choices families are making at home. Chef Matthew has over 7 years of experience instructing and developing programs in Culinary Arts, Nutrition and Fitness Education. The goal is to provide both a superior client experience and become tremendous culinary resource for our students in our community and, eventually, all over the world!
Project: FAST Food©
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