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Slow Food

This article needs to distinguish between the organization and the food aspects of the Slow Movement.

The Slow Food movement, coined in response to "fast food", claims to preserve the culturalcuisineand the associated food plants and seeds, domestic animals, and farming within an ecoregion. It was begun by Carlo Petriniin Italyas a resistance movement to fast food but has since expanded globally to 100 countries and now has 83,000 members. It now describes itself (humorously) as an "eco-gastronomy faction" within the ecology movement, and some refer to the movement as the "culinary wing" of the anti-globalization movement. It announced the opening of a new University of Gastronomic Sciences at Pollenzo, in Piedmont, Italy in 2004. Carlo Petrini and Massimo Montanariare the leading figures in the creation of the University, whose goal is to promote awareness of good food and nutrition.


  • 1 Objectives
  • 2 Results
  • 3 Criticism
  • 4 See also
  • 5 External links


Objectives of the Slow Food movement include or have included:

  • Seed banksto preserve native varieties, usually in cooperation with more local movements
  • An "ark of taste" for each ecoregionwhose foods and flavors are preserved
  • Preserving and promoting local and traditional food product know-how
  • Organizing small-scale processing, e.g. slaughtering, of short run products
  • Organizing celebrations of local cuisine within the region of production, e.g. the Feast of Fieldsheld in some cities in Canada
  • Taste Education
  • Educating consumers about the hidden risks of fast food
  • Educating citizens about the hidden risks of agribusinessand factory farms
  • Educating citizens about the risks of monocultureand reliance on too few genomesor varieties
  • Various political programs to preserve family farms
  • Lobbying for agricultural policychanges to support organic farms
  • Lobbying against genetic modificationof foodstuffs
  • Lobbying against the use of pesticides
  • Teaching gardening, especially to studentsand prisoners
  • Moral purchasingof foodstuffs produced by locals using methods that are morally acceptable to the consumer

From time to time, Slow Food intervenes directly in market transactions, e.g. preserving four varieties of native American Turkey by ordering 4,000 eggs of these and commissioning their raising and slaughtering and delivery to market.


The success the Slow Food movement has generated is tough to measure considering the organization itself is only sixteen years old. The current grassroots nature of Slow Food is such that few people in Europeand especially the United Statesare aware of it, but this may soon change. As mentioned earlier, the movement has expanded to include over 80,000 members in over 100 countries, every country with its own chapters. All totaled, 800 local ?convivia? chapters exist. 360 convivia in Italy are composed of 35,000 members, along with 450 other regional chapters around the world. The organizational structure is decentralized, each convivium has a leader who is responsible for promoting local artisans, local farmers, and local flavors through regional events such as Taste Workshops, wine tastings, and farmer?s markets.

Offices have been opened in Switzerland(1995), Germany(1998), New York(2000), France(2003), and the latest, Japanin 2005; of course the head offices are located in northern Italy, in Bra. Numerous publications are put out by the organization, in several languages. In the US, ?the Snail? is the quarterly of choice, while Slow Food puts out literature in several other European nations. Recent efforts at publicity include the world?s largest food and wine fair, the Salone del Gusto, a biennial cheese fair in Bra called ?Cheese?, Genoan fish festival called SlowFish. The first Terre Madra (world meeting of food communities) convened in October 2004 in Turin.

Statistics show that Europe is a much bigger consumer of organics than the U.S., Germany in particular. Slow Food has contributed to the growing awareness of health concerns in Europe, as evidenced by this fact, but on society as a whole, Slow Food has had little effect. An example of this is the fact that tourists visit Slow Food restaurants more than locals, but Slow Food and its sister movements are still young. In an effort to spread the ideals of anti-fast food, Slow Food has targeted the youth of the nations in primary and secondary schools. Volunteers help build structural framework for school gardens and put on workshops to introduce the new generation to the art of farming.

In order to effectively assess the success of the Slow Food movement in persuading people to eat locally grown, healthier food, a survey seems the most logical method to extract public opinion towards the movement and its ideals. Survey questions that would determine if the general population has (1) heard of the Slow Food organization (2) how often people eat organic food, and what are their reasons (3) how do the classes differ in their perception of slow food. To be successful, the movement needs to determine who, if anyone, is interested in slow food, who can afford it, and why. With 83,000 members, Slow Food is on its way into the average household.


Critics of the organization have charged it with being elitist, as it discourages nominally cheaper alternative methods of growing or preparing food. Slow Food responds by claiming to be working towards local production and consumption which will exploit "best practices" of science and professions worldwide but ultimately prove cheaper due to less reliance on transport and energy and chemical and technology intensive methods. These arguments parallel those of the anti-globalization movement, Greenpeaceand green partiesagainst global export of monocultured foodstuffs, especially GMOs. A central point related to these arguments is that transport prices are artificially low because the true cost of fuel (including the protection of shipping lanes and other military interventions around the world) are not factored into the price of goods, and are instead paid for indirectly through personal taxes.

See also

  • Slow Movement
  • Local food
  • Ark of taste
  • Cittaslow
  • Nutrition
  • Eco-syndicalism
  • Slow company

External links

  • Official web site
  • Traditional Mediterranean and Asian recipes
  • Big Picture TVFree videos of Slow Food USA Director, Erika Lesser

Slow food is also a nickname for a fast foodestablishment that has slow service.de:Slowfood eo:Slow Food fr:Slow Food it:Slow Food nl:Slow Food ja:?????? pl:Slow Food sv:Slow Food

Retrieved from "http://en.wikipedia.org/Slow_Food"

This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.
It uses material from the http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Slow+Food Wikipedia article Slow Food.

  All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License