Has anybody ever heard of an organization entitled Slow Food? I have recently came across their website and wanted to share it with you. Slow Food was born in the 1980s when a food revolutionary by the name of Carlo Petrini led the charge in publicly protesting the possible construction of a fast food restaurant in the vicinity of the Spanish Steps. The activists were disgusted by the manner in which culture and tradition were quickly being replaced by food fads and quick culinary fixes. Since the protest in the 1980s, Slow Food has impacted over 160 countries and inspired millions of people to participate in their quest for biodiversity and equality in our global food system (Slow).
At the heart of Slow Food’s mission are three tenets… to foster meaningful relationships between farmers and their customers, to preserve the dwindling variety of meats, vegetables, fruits, grains and dairy products that were once in abundance (something that Slow Food refers to as food biodiversity), and finally to educate the general public about the aspects of agriculture and industry that threaten food justice. Slow Food sums up its unique food philosophy using three words: good, clean, and fair. They believe that good food should be nutritionally dense and of high caliber. They believe that the output of food should be clean, or in no way pose threats to the environment. Finally, they believe that the process in which people gain access to food should be fair, and that the atmosphere of the workplace for those employed by the food industry should be dignified and safe (Slow).
Additionally, the structure of Slow Food consists of a headquarters in Bra, Italy, a series of national organizations that stem from the headquarters, and countless convivia, which are populations that plan and host culinary and educational events across the globe. It appears that those who decide to become involved can participate domestically or abroad. For instance, Slow Food is responsible for global events such as AsiO Gusto, Cheese, Slow Meat, and Terra Madre Day. After one becomes involved, they gain access to this diverse group of people bound together in order to achieve a common goal, they are presented with the opportunity to support Slow Food events, and they can dialogue with their local chapter to increase their involvement (Slow).
Slow Food believes that each person has the potential to become a more aware and knowledgeable consumer… below is a blurb from Slow Food’s website (http://www.slowfood.com/international/27/be-a-responsible-consumer) detailing their suggestions for becoming an empowered consumer:
“Go Slow in your life
1 Buy whole ingredients. Cook them. Eat them.
2 Avoid processed stuff with long ingredient lists. Eat real food.
3 Grow some of your own food. Even if just on your windowsill.
4 Whenever possible, know the story behind the food you buy.
5 Buy local food; find out what is in season!
Go Slow in your community
1 Cook and eat with others – not just family and friends. Bring new people and perspectives to the table.
2 Join a community garden and grow food with others.
3 Connect with your local Slow Food chapter.
4 Shake the hand that feeds you. Meet the people who grow your food. Shop at a farmers market, visit a farm or buy shares from a farm that offers a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program.
5 Learn about your local or regional food history and cultural dishes.”
How will you “Go Slow”? Do you believe that there is a need for organizations such as Slow Food? Why or why not?
Until Next Week… Plan Well, Pack Well, Live Well,
Slow Food. Blu Lab, 2015. Web. 13 Sept. 2015. <http://www.slowfood.com>