Dear leaders of all Slow Food communities and convivia around the world,
Dear Slow Foodies,
At this time of great global political uncertainty, marked by a lack of strategic vision and the erosion of many of the values we hold dear—solidarity, social justice, the common good, and inclusion—I am writing to you in the hope of inspiring you to take on the challenges you face on a daily basis with renewed energy.
The defense and promotion of animal, plant, and gastronomic biodiversity is the driving force that has been pushing us forward for over 20 years as we pioneer the creation of a new model of socioeconomic development that puts harmony between humans and nature at its center. Thanks to the Presidia and the Ark of Taste, we have given back an identity to many communities and created value within them. These communities are working tirelessly, driven by love and passion, to defend their local environment, traditions, and culture.
I want to ask you all to make an even greater contribution to our great catalogue, which just a few weeks ago reached 5,000 products in 150 countries. This project defines the deepest meaning of this family to which we all belong and is key to interpreting all of our movement’s changes. It shows us the direction of the incredible work that we must do from 2020 on. Behind the products on the Ark are communities working to reaffirm the importance of local food production, traditional knowledge, and common goods, and they represent the spearhead of an alternative and modern economic paradigm.
This long journey, supported by strategic research at our University of Gastronomic Sciences and by the young students who are contributing more and more to the promotion of this heritage, represents the essence of our vocation, diffused and diverse in every corner of the globe, and increasingly adding value to the different cultural expressions of the world.
I hope that this new focus, already approved by the International Executive Committee, is shared unanimously and with participation in every part of the planet.
As millions of young people around the world get involved in the issues of climate change and environmental protection, Slow Food is reasserting its mission to protect biodiversity.