600 International Delegates at Indigenous Terra Madre 2015, Including Ethiopian Tribes and Communities

23 Oct 2015 | English

Representatives of Ethiopian tribes and communities will contribute to the event by sharing their knowledge and experiences

A large delegation of representatives of indigenous communities from the Slow Food Terra Madre network and beyond will be participating in Indigenous Terra Madre (ITM 2015), which will take place from November 3 to 7, 2015 in Shillong (Meghalaya, India). The event is the result of a collaboration between Slow Food, the Indigenous Partnership for Agrobiodiversity and Food Sovereignty (Indigenous Partnership) and the North East Slow Food and Agrobiodiversity Society (NESFAS).

International representatives will be coming to the event from five continents, from 14 African countries, 17 Asian countries, 8 European countries, 12 American countries and 7 Oceanian countries.

Representatives from several Ethiopian communities will be attending:

– the Konso community (south-central Ethiopia). The origins of Konso culture are intertwined with the domestication of the moringa tree and its introduction in the highlands. Moringa leaves have joined the Slow Food Ark of Taste. The trees provide shade for coffee, the most valuable cash crop in the highlands. In fact the association of the two plants, moringa and coffee, exists only in the Konso area as it is a specific cultural expression of the deep link between the Konso and their ecosystem.

– the Hor tribe (southwest Ethiopia, north of Lake Stephanie Basi). An agro-pastoral community with a population of 6,000, mainly pastoralists and fishers. They plant different type of sorghum and raise sheep, goats and cattle, acting as custodians of rare local varieties.

– the Guji-Oromo community (Guji zone in the Oromia region). They are among the indigenous Oromo tribes sharing borders with the Sidama, Gedeo and other ethnic groups in southeastern part of the country. The Guji people are pastoralists in lowland areas and farmers in the highlands. In the highlands they produce honey, coffee, cereals and other crops, whereas in lowland they raise camels, sheep, goat and cattle. They govern themselves using the Gada system.

– the Gedeo community (southern Ethiopia between the Sidama and Boran zone of the Oromia region). They are sedentary cultivators, focusing on a food crop, ensete (Ethiopian banana), and a cash crop, coffee. They are unique among the ensete-growing peoples, as they plant the ensete, elsewhere largely a homestead crop, in the fields. They are the only people to intercrop their ensete with coffee. The Gedeo are also renowned for their conservation of natural resources. Using ensete, the Gedeo are able to produce food, livestock feed and wood from the same plot.

– the Hadiya community. Mainly shifting cultivators.

– the Gamo community. They are agro-pastoralist people and grow cereals, root crops and livestock on a mountain landscape.

Representatives of several groups and organizations from Ethiopia will also attend the event, including the Woyera-Moringa Suppliers Association (a cooperative which unites mostly female members of the Konso community who work with moringa leaves); the Baaboo (a local NGO which focuses on ensete development—planting, processing, and marketing—and on Gedeo ensete cuisines; the Tena Agar Traditional Foods and Utensils Protection and Promotion Association (established in 2011, it studies, documents, promotes and supports the production, preparation, supply and distribution of traditional foods and drinks and their utensils); the Daanchee Gedeo Ensete Cuisines Baaboo Development & Relief Association (whose mission is to promote Gedeo ensete cuisines through food shows, cultural events and its mobile kitchen) and Addis Ababa University.

You can find the program of the event here: http://bit.ly/1LWZaxh

Indigenous Terra Madre 2015 gratefully acknowledges funding support from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD), The Christensen Fund and the Government of Meghalaya. Indigenous Terra Madre 2015 is also thankful for the contributions made by Tamalpais Trust, Swift Foundation, AgroEcology Fund, Bread for the World and the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO). 

Terra Madre is a worldwide network, launched by Slow Food in 2004, which unites small-scale producers from 163 countries involved in the sustainable production of food. Among these, to date the Indigenous Terra Madre Network comprises 372 indigenous food communities, 41 indigenous Presidia projects and 308 indigenous Ark of Taste products.  For more information: http://localhost/slowfood/international/149/indigenous-terra-madre-network

Discover the stories of Indigenous Peoples from around the world on Slow Food website in the ‘Indigenous Voices’ section! http://localhost/slowfood/international/food-for-thought/slow-themes/260987

For further information, please contact the Slow Food International Press Office:

Paola Nano, +39 329 8321285 [email protected] 

Ajay Nayak, +91-9820535501 [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.

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