“They say we are what we eat, but the way we eat is destroying the planet. Fortunately, some people are fighting back,” says Azio Citi, introducing Carlo Petrini in the new documentary Slow Food Story. “But who is Carlo Petrini? He’s my best friend.”
Slow Food Story offers a personal account of how the Slow Food movement was born 25 years ago, and its journey that has seen it spread to 150 countries. Starting with its founder still current president Carlo Petrini, director Stefano Sardo weaves a story that portrays how a group of friends from a small Italian province pursued a dream of a better world. Sardo, himself from the city of Bra in the Piedmont region, introduces us to characters like Azio, who have been at the association’s side since the beginning and offer a unique insight.
It is a story of pleasure and politics, joy and sorrow, local and global friendships. From Piedmont’s peasant tradition of “cantare le uova” – walking amongst the Langhe’s vineyards to visit farms, drink red wine and sing until dawn – that Petrini and friends still carry on today, to the global Terra Madre gathering that unites Slow Food’s food communities, members and supporters from 160 countries.
Footage that takes us from Italy to Kenya to the USA reflects the movement’s proactive approach to change based on seeking out the good in life – for taste, the environment, cultures and humans – and promoting it. “We are an association that wants to change the world, and that wants to change through pleasure,” says Petrini.
With this approach, Slow Food wants to revolutionize the food system, changing the direction of a planet that is driving at top gear, fueled by fast food, industrial agriculture and globalized commodities. As Prince Charles says in the film, “Joining the international Slow Food movement might prove to be the answer.”