A Grassroots Movement:
An Introduction to Slow Food
by Shannon Kelly
The Slow Food movement was created in the 1980’s to generate awareness about eating good, fair, and clean food. The consumption of good, fair, and clean food can mean several things. Good food refers to healthy whole organic food that is enjoyable and grown from good quality plants and animals. In slow food, good food refers to eating healthy nutritious food through gratification while building strong healthy communities through culture and local diversity. In Slow Food, clean conveys the meaning that food should be developed in a pesticide free environment. Clean food also encourages biodiversity and farming from neighboring communities. Lastly, fair communicates that food should be created in a way that upholds worth and equal payment for those who have produced the food despite social or economic class.
Beginning in Italy, the movement has traveled worldwide, aspiring to create a transformation in food systems. Slow food aims to reconnect individuals with culture, tradition, and local communities with a better understanding of where our plants, animals, food and water come from. This is an all encompassing system where people internationally can find enjoyment in knowing and understanding the importance of how food is grown, harvested, and marketed. Slow Food USA’s members have over 200 chapters nationwide that encourage ways in which communities can support and embrace the relationship we have with sustainable good, clean, fair food and our planet. Members engage in the activities such as:
- Raising public awareness, improving access and encouraging the enjoyment of foods that are local, seasonal and sustainably grown
- Caring for the land and protecting biodiversity for today's communities and future generations
- Performing educational outreach within their communities and working with children in schools and through public programs
- Identifying, promoting and protecting fruits, vegetables, grains, animal breeds, wild foods and cooking traditions at risk of disappearance
- Advocating for farmers and artisans who grow, produce, market, prepare and serve wholesome food
- Promoting the celebration of food as a cornerstone of pleasure, culture and community
The Slow Food movement challenges us to look at food differently. Food can be good, clean, and fair if we are able to slow down our everyday lives and take the time to appreciate what our planet can give us. www.slowfood.com is the main link providing further information about the Slow Food movement internationally, with more information offering various ways we can become involved and informed.
The following video from You Tube was created for the University of Florida to explain the Slow Food movement chapter located in Gainesville. The video explains the movement clearly, informing the public about the fight against fast food and advantages of slow food. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FI90oUrZEqg