Washington, D.C.-based chef José Andrés, known for his humanitarian relief efforts in disaster areas, has directed his attention to the Japanese cruise ship that is quarantined because of its coronavirus-infected passengers.
Andrés started to distribute food to the people stranded aboard the Diamond Princess through his nonprofit World Central Kitchen.
An off-site kitchen was set up at the Yokohama port by Andrés’ team to help the passengers and crew.
Princess Cruise announced over Twitter that the company is now partnering with the World Central Kitchen, saying that the nonprofit’s chef relief teams are preparing and delivering meals for the guests and crew of Diamond Princess in the Port of Yokohama, along with a video showing the team’s work.
We’ve partnered with @WCKitchen. Their chef relief teams are preparing and delivering meals for #DiamondPrincess guests and crew to the Port of Yokohama. With gratitude ???? #HangInThereDiamondPrincess pic.twitter.com/L5BJC47U4P
— Princess Cruises (@PrincessCruises) February 18, 2020
From our Tokyo off-site kitchen, to field kitchen at the port, to delivery onto the #DiamondPrincess ship, we constantly test food temperature. Health of quarantined guests & crew onboard is top priority—we’ve built a system to ensure we can deliver fresh meals safely & reliably. pic.twitter.com/buN3KuK9eE
— World Central Kitchen (@WCKitchen) February 20, 2020
The infamous cruise ship departed from Yokohama on January 20. It was scheduled to come back on February 4. It was later revealed that a passenger who got off in Hong Kong on January 25 tested positive for COVID-19, which is caused by the new coronavirus.
On February 4, 10 people onboard tested positive and the ship was placed under quarantine for two weeks by Japanese authorities. The Diamond Princess has now become the site of the most infections outside of China, the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak.
At the time of this report, there were two deaths among the passengers confirmed by Japan’s health ministry and at least 624 confirmed cases on board. Both of the individuals who died were reportedly in their 80s.
Passengers who have tested negative had recently begun to leave the ship after two weeks of quarantine aboard.
In September 2019, Andrés provided more than 100,000 free meals for Bahamians, who survived the Hurricane Dorian, as well as residents of the Carolinas and Florida.
He also opened a kitchen in D.C. to serve cooked meals free of charge for federal workers and their families during the government shutdown in January 2019.
Last month, the celebrity chef helped victims of two earthquakes that shook Puerto Rico.