Category Archives: Advocacy

2016 Terra Madre, in Turin, Italy

“Slow Food International” has a world food festival every other year in Turin, Italy. It’s called:

“Terra Madre/Salone del Gusto”
(“Mother Earth / Tasting Festival”)

This year, 3,000 delegates from around the world were there to represent their homeland. Several of us members from Slow Food South Bay went as delegates:

  1. Joni Sare, chef, and president of our Slow Food South Bay chapter
  2. Hilli Salo, founder of Silicon Valley Grows, and leader of Slow Food South Bay
  3. Peter Ruddock, committee chair of Ark of Taste, California
  4. Doniga and Eric Markegard, owners of Markegard Family Grass Fed Beef
  5. Mary Clark Bartlett, CEO/founder of Epicurean Group

Mary was inspired to make this video, which has a wonderful insight of the sights and sounds at the festival:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gIIxQCZXPf8&feature=youtu.be

Here is a quick recap of the numbers:

  • 5 days (Sept 21 – 25, 2016)
  • 1.5 million people –from around the world
  • Nearly 160 countries showcased their regional –good, clean, fair– food
  • Thousands of products for tasting, and for sale
  • Dozens of speakers, workshops, dinners, cooking demos, conferences, forums

“Mark your calendar for 2018! If you love food, and if you love to talk with the people who make amazing food –then this event is for you!”

Here are a few photos from this year’s event:

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Earth Overshoot Day-We’ve Used Up Our Resources for 2015!!

Yikes!  We are now in deficit spending of our planet’s natural resources.  As of August 13th, 2015 humans around the world had already used up the equivalent of this entire year’s worth of available resources if life and the survival of the planet are to be sustained.  From our food supply to fuel for transportation and business operating practices, our choices are drawing down our resource supply faster than it can replenish itself.

Slow food farm wker AlbaRead about how EARTH OVERSHOOT DAY each year marks the beginning of when we start dipping into the future to continue our way of life, according to the calculator created by the Global Footprint Network think-tank.  Their calculator tools are used by the United Nations and many individual countries to understand and evaluate how our collective lifestyle choices worldwide are seeing humanity’s demands for resources far exceed our Earth’s ability to sustain us.

Check out a chart of our World Footprint and search by nation to see exactly we are threatening our very survival by our own choices.

Or, hop over to the resource-rich Overshoot Day website that will help each of us learn how to make choices every day to enable our planet to provide for future generations.  From TAKE ACTION to FOR KIDS AND TEACHERS, there are ideas and activities to create positive change.

Goodbye Tipping, Hello Living Wage: The Changing Face of Progressive Restaurants | Bay Area Bites | KQED Food

Many restaurants in our greater Bay Area and other cities are slowly shifting their practices in favor of greater wage equality for all restaurant workers and better salaries. This is good food justice news and a move in the right direction for a living wage.  Read the article in Bay Area Bites from KQED.

 

Breeding Organic Seeds (with a little help from Clif Bar)

Organic farmers say they need crop varieties that were bred specifically for conditions on their farms. Clif Bar & Company decided to back their cause with up to $10 million in grants.

Source: Do Organic Farmers Need Special Seeds And Money To Breed Them? | Bay Area Bites | KQED Food

GMO Salmon: Concerns Over Contamination of Wild Species in Nearby Rivers, Waterways

Scientists are trying to predict what might happen if genetically modified salmon escaped growth facilities. It’s a scenario often raised by critics who don’t want the FDA to approve sale of the fish.

Source: Genetically Modified Salmon: Coming To A River Near You? | Bay Area Bites | KQED Food

Meat Labeling–Grass-Fed or Not?–Why You Should Care 

hamburgersMore of us are asking for grass-fed beef at the meat counters and restaurants.  With few or no consistent regulations in place, ranching operations and labels vary and consumers are left to trust what marketers tell us.  If that is of concern to you, follow the Source link…

Source: Is Your Grass-Fed Beef for Real? Here’s How to Tell and Why it Matters | Bay Area Bites | KQED Food

Communities Get A Lift As Local Food Sales Surge To $11 Billion A Year | Bay Area Bites | KQED Food

If you are Slow, you likely frequent at least one of our local farmers’ markets, so this article is talking about you!  Great news for a more sustainable and healthy way of living for all of us – and a delicious, nutritious way to help with climate change.

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The U.S. Department of Agriculture says local food is growing quickly from a niche market into something that’s generating significant income for communities across the country.

Source: Communities Get A Lift As Local Food Sales Surge To $11 Billion A Year | Bay Area Bites | KQED Food

Norway’s Bee Highway-A Response to Concerns for Pollinator’s Future

We found a recent Smithsonian.com article that describes one country’s plan to support bee populations that are increasingly dying off from exposure to toxic pesticides and decreasing habitat.  In this story, another current article is quoted Bee red rose GGas saying America’s recent research data indicates that in the last year, ending in April 2015, bee populations declined by as much as 40%.  Yet bees are responsible for over a third of our food supply as the necessary pollinators in the chain of events from flower to fruit.

We all could think about how we, as consumers, can have positive influence in this increasing threat to our food supply.  Buy organic ingredients where possible and include bee-attracting plants in your garden are two of the most obvious.  A USDA website explains the situation from many angles for those who want more in-depth information about causes and the impact to the food system we know today.

How Fish Could Change What It Means For Food To Be Organic | Bay Area Bites

If you care about how your food was grown or raised, this article on the latest from the USDA on how FARMED SEAFOOD might be considered ‘organic’ is an important read for you.  Public commentary will be open this Summer (2015).

Read the article:  How Fish Could Change What It Means For Food To Be Organic | Bay Area Bites.

 

Food Policy & Capitol Updates (on-going from Roots of Change)

ROC’s Capitol Updates – Roots of Change.

From our friends at Roots of Change, we will periodically post their summary of current legislation related all aspects of our food system and our state’s agriculture.