Every week BBC Radio 4’s The Food Programme presents a different product from the Slow Food Ark of Taste.
The next episode will be aired on Monday 25 May, 2015, and it will feature dulse, a wild seaweed that grows on the North Atlantic coast of Britain and has been part of the regular diet of coastal communities for centuries. Today it is no longer possible to harvest dulse from the English coastline as the water is too polluted, but in recent years there has been a revival in harvesting the abundant variety of seaweed from Scotland and Northern Ireland’s much purer coastal waters. Foraging for the versatile and healthy ingredient, remains a niche and labour-intensive activity that has not been commercialized on a large scale but, nevertheless, its production should be preserved.
On June 1, the Food Programme will then focus on bottarga and salt producers from Mauritania. Small-scale fishing and fish-processing activities, including the production of bottarga (dried mullet roe), are seriously threatened by industrial fleets (mostly foreign) which are plundering Mauritanian fish-rich waters, causing serious problems for local communities. In response to this, Slow Food and the local NGO Mauritanie 2000 created the Imraguen Women’s Mullet Botargo Presidium in 2006. The Presidium has helped Imraguen women to preserve local knowledge, strengthen their technical skills and increase production. In order to make their local mullet bottarga, Mauritanian women require one ingredient: salt. In cooperation with the French association of salt producers, Univers-Sel, and thanks to the support of the EU Commission, a project has also been launched in order to produce high-quality salt locally with the solar “salicoltura” technique (Sa.Sol.No.). Today the salt for the bottarga is produced by 50 people, mostly women, in the Baie de l’Etoile, a protected area about 10 km north of Nouadhibou.
So far, the Ark of Taste series has featured different products from all over the world, such as Geitost cheese (Norway), Sea Island Red Peas (USA), West Borneo Forest Honey (Indonesia), the Chicatana Ant (Mexico) and Three Counties Perry (UK). You can find all the clips at http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b006qnx3/clips.
For further information, please contact the Slow Food International Press Office:
Paola Nano, +39 329 8321285 [email protected]
Slow Food involves over a million of people dedicated to and passionate about good, clean and fair food. This includes chefs, youth, activists, farmers, fishers, experts and academics in over 158 countries; a network of around 100,000 Slow Food members linked to 1,500 local chapters worldwide (known as convivia), contributing through their membership fee, as well as the events and campaigns they organize; and over 2,500 Terra Madre food communities who practice small-scale and sustainable production of quality food around the world.