Slow Food

University of Gastronomic Sciences Teachers’ Meeting

Italy - 26 May 04

Colorno (Parma) - The University of Gastronomic Sciences will officially open its campus at Colorno (Parma, Italy) with a first international conference, “Teaching Gastronomy”, to be held on the 28th and 29th May 2004. “The conference has been organized to meet growing demand from around the world for food and wine education of a high academic level” states Alberto Capatti, Academic and Scientific Coordinator of the Association of the Friends of the University of Gastronomic Sciences.

“The presentations planned for the conference aim to share personal and professional experiences and to suggest teaching and research approaches for the newly created university” comments Vittorio Manganelli, Director of the Association. The contributions made during the conference will help to formulate the structure and clarify course content of the Gastronomic Sciences program, focusing on the different areas of history, science, communication and organizational policies.
The conference will welcome a number of well-known figures from food culture world-wide, both as speakers and as invited guests who will participate in the planned discussions over the two days. These sessions will be closed to the public.

Barbara Santich, Director of the Gastronomy program at the University of Adelaide, Australia, observes “the main requisite for teaching gastronomy is to understand it in all its various manifestations”. In Colorno, Barbara Santich will describe the Cordon Bleu Graduate Program in Gastronomy organized in collaboration with the University of Adelaide. “It is necessary to provide students with an in-depth knowledge of the history and culture of food, from the kitchen to gastronomic literature”.
Other speakers include Claudio Peri, lecturer in Food and Microbiological Technologies at the University of Milan, who states that “the need for a scientific approach to issues of quality, food safety and production is also extending to gastronomy, through a new professional qualification for those working in the restaurant and catering sector”. This is evident from the ever more complex issues surrounding the concept of food quality (authenticity and safety, nutritional and sensory quality, intangible qualities or qualities associated with the context of production, quality of service, requirements of the commercial system, systems of guarantees and traceability).

The celebrated British journalist Hugh Johnson will also be present at the Colorno conference, giving a detailed description of his experiences in the world of food and wine journalism. After starting out as a travel writer in the 1960s, he wrote The World Atlas of Wine and became a world authority on the history and production of wine. He calls himself a “diligent dilettante” and at Colorno will examine issues connected with gastronomic journalism.

Another high-profile participant will be Hervé This of INRA, the National Institute of Agronomic Research in Paris, who sees molecular gastronomy as a union of passion, art and technology. “A simple canapé, if eaten with three friends and lovingly prepared can be a true delicacy for the palate: we taste the love with which it has been prepared and the affectionate friendship of our companions” states This, going on to say that the same canapé is even better if prepared as art, but the artisan or artist must of course know how to produce the food dish.

Created in 1988, molecular gastronomy is a scientific discipline covering gastronomy in general, and cooking in particular, from a molecular perspective, linking to the chemistry and physics of food.

Campus of COLORNO (Pr)


FRIDAY 28 MAY 2004
10.00 – 13.00
Welcome, overview of conference, introduction to speakers:
Carlo Petrini
Alberto Capatti
The history of food and cuisine: organization of courses, subjects, teaching, professional profiles and academic objectives. Three experiences compared.
Barbara Santich – University of Adelaide, Australia
Massimo Montanari – University of Bologna
Antoni Riera-Melis – Institut de Studis Catalans, Spain

15.00 – 18.00
Science, technology and control systems in creating a gastronomic culture. The role of scientific information in acquiring knowledge of food and culinary transformation.
Claudio Peri – University of Milan
Giorgio Calabrese – University of Piacenza
Tim Lang – University of London, UK

10.00 – 13.00
Language and mass-media: the role of the press, television and advertising in acquiring a gastronomic culture. The instruments of a critical approach to globalized food habits and educating free, discerning and informed consumers.
Corby Kummer – journalist, United States
Hugh Johnson – journalist, UK
Alberto Capatti – Association of Friends of the University of Gastronomic Sciences

14.30 – 17.00
From learning in the family and society to university education. Teaching how to produce, teaching how to understand products and culinary techniques: gastronomic education and its agricultural and social roots.
Hervé This – INRA (National Institute of Agronomic Research) France
Vandana Shiva – Research Foundation for Science, Technology and Ecology, India
Bernward Geier – IFOAM (International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements), Germany
Carlo Petrini – President Slow Food

For further information please contact: Paolo Enria, Anna Eastman, Franca Chiarle

tel. 0172 458507/458505/458513