The Slow Food movement is an international organization founded in 1986 by Carlo Petrini. Slow Food was originally founded in Italy and is currently headquartered there, but the movement continues today around the globe. There currently are over 100,000 members worldwide in 1500 convivia (which are local chapters). Slow Food USA specifically has 25,000 members and over 250,000 supporters with 250 convivia. These communities practice sustainable production of food. Slow Food promotes an alternative to fast food and encourages natural farming of the ecosystem.

The movement has many objectives, but their main philosophy is: “We believe that everyone has a fundamental right to the pleasure of good food and consequently the responsibility to protect the heritage of food, tradition and culture that make this pleasure possible.” The organization believes in neogastronomy, which describes the relationship between plate, planet, people and culture. They promote good, clean, and fair food. More specifically, Slow Food endorses a fresh and flavorsome seasonal diet that satisfies the senses of local culture, with clean food production and consumption that doesn’t harm the environment, animals or our health that is reasonably priced for consumers. Their objectives also include educating consumers about the risks of fast food and monoculture, lobbying against use of pesticides and genetic engineering, and organizing celebrations of local cuisine within regions.

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Personally, I find this movement intriguing and it’s a great idea but would be very hard to live by. I wish I could follow these objectives but I think it’s a lot harder to do. I believe in the same principles, which is why I chose to research the organization. I also think that this organization could greatly coincide with Whole Foods’ mission. If I had the money, time and more self-control, I could see myself following this social movement.

5 responses »

  1. Loukas T says:

    I also looked into this movement and saw that the Slow Food movement is just a branch of a much larger “Slow” Movement. I feel like this movement makes sense now that everything moves so fast in the developed world. Unfortunately, though it probably is healthy, it would be hard to implement in everyday life because our society is so dependent on fast food and cheap food. These two ideas conflict with the Slow Food movement. I truly understand where this movement is coming from, but I just can’t see it being implemented on a large scale.

  2. Charles says:

    I think this idea would be very hard to live by especially taking into consideration American culture. Fast food operates seamlessly within our low value of fellowship with others during meals. We do not see the correlation between food and relationships, so to us it does not matter if we grab a quick bite and get back to work. I have heard that this is different in European countries, meals are much more drawn out and set out as a time for fellowship. This sort of movement would be more successful there as opposed to the states.

  3. Matt says:

    I think this is a great idea, but unlike you guys, I don’t see any reason why we can’t make it happen. I think one of the saddest things to happen to modern American culture is the lack of intimate eating experiences. I know plenty of households where dinner is a quick TV dinner or ordering take-out/delivery; there is a lack of the simple pleasures that come from cooking a healthy, wholesome meal, sitting down with family/friends, and enjoying good food and good conversation. For some reason, we have ingrained into our brains that the American work ethic forces us to constantly be on the run. We eat a crap lunch at our desks in 20 minutes and get right back to work. In reality, though, who says we can’t take an hour or two to enjoy the company of friends, family and colleagues? Who says we can’t take time to actually enjoy our food? People just need to take a step back and realize the modern world is not, in fact, that hectic or demanding that it requires us to sacrifice one of the most ancient bonding rituals of humanity to survive in it. We all like to imagine we are living in this advanced, super-fast world and that our lives are completely different from anyone else’s in human history, but that notion is crap. People just need to reorganize their priorities and spend more time building and sustaining meaningful relationships, and to take more pleasures from simple things like delicious, fresh food and cooking a homemade meal.

  4. Steph P. says:

    I thought this was an interesting movement but I am not sure how feasible it would be in America. I work at the local middle schools and promote healthy eating combined with daily exercise. To incorporate technology with a healthy lifestyle, we have the kids record their calorie intake into excel, compared to how many hours they spent exercising. The sad reality that comes up most of the time is that the kids either eat 3 meals a day of usually unhealthy fast food, or don’t eat either breakfast or dinner simply because their parents cannot afford it. Nearly 50 million people in America are affected by poverty, and cannot even dream of buying organic products or anything remotely healthy for their families. Therefore they turn to the fast food chains to feed themselves and their kids, resulting in negative eating habits in the long term. I think there needs to be a shift in the price of food. A head of lettuce at Walmart currently costs about $2.99. Yet you can be in the same Walmart and pay $1.00 for a McDouble at McDonalds.

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