The 50 or so people packed in the farmhouse kitchen on Newmilns Farm came from both inside and outside of the Slow Food movement., but shared a common commitment to building a more positive food culture in Scotland – one that would ultimately share Slow Food’s values of ‘good, clean and fair’.
As Carlo Petrini, founder of the movement that after 25 years boasts over a million supporters in 170 countries, wrote in his greeting: “I am delighted to hear of the incredible energy of our movement in Scotland, and at the same time, to sense that in ever corner of the UK our volunteers, local groups, our local people are working for a profound change in the food system.”
Speakers like Mike Small of The Fife Diet and Ben Reade of the Nordic Food Lab continued that challenge, drawing on their experience from Scotland, and further afield.
Representing the original roots of Slow Food in Scotland, Pam Rodway of Crofting Connections spoke movingly of the simple, but profound role of the table, and how sharing food rests at the very centre of a movement that has never forgotten that the pleasures of food are an important right that should be denied to no-one on the planet.
Working groups completed the day, generating the ideas that will form the basis for action at Slow Food Scotland. With over half of the attendees signing-up as volunteers there is certainly no lack of commitment to continuing the momentum that the birth of Slow Food in Scotland has clearly generated.
John Cooke, Scotland representative on the Slow Food UK Board concluded: “This has been a very special moment. The energy, commitment and determination that have lit up Founders’ Day, coupled with our global connections and support, make it clear that Slow Food can continue to make a unique and growing contribution in Scotland. Like the symbolic apple tree we planted outside the kitchen door at the end of the day, from these fresh roots, healthy growth will come.”
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Note to editors
Slow Food is a global, grassroots organization linking the pleasure of good food with a commitment to local communities and the environment.
It was founded in 1989 to prevent the disappearance of local food cultures and traditions, counteract the rise of fast life and combat people’s dwindling interest in the food they eat, where it comes from and how our food choices affect the world around us.
Since its beginnings, Slow Food has grown into a global movement involving millions of people, in over 170 countries. https://www.slowfood.com/
Find out more about our network and activities around the world:
- Saving endangered foods and defending gastronomic traditions through our biodiversity projects;
- Teaching the pleasure of food and how to make good, clean and fair choices through food and taste education;
- Celebrations of the gastronomic traditions of Europe and Asia, artisanal cheese and fish, and meetings of our worldwide networks in our international events;
- From animal welfare to land grabbing, addressing hot topics that we care about;
- Connecting young people passionate about changing the food system through the Slow Food Youth Network;
- Countless activities organized daily by Slow Food members in our convivia (local groups);
- Linking food producers, chefs, academics and representatives of local communities worldwide in the Terra Madre network;
- Creating the next generation of food and gastronomy professionals at the University of Gastronomic Sciences.
In the UK, Slow Food is devolved into national bodies for Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland, supported by a UK office. http://www.slowfood.org.uk/
Programmes such as the Chef’s Alliance and Forgotten Foods, are complemented by local convivia groups, led and run by volunteers.