Slow and Wild Weekend: Local Wild Food Challenge Verduno

The Local Wild Food Challenge is a culinary competition where participants forage, fish, hunt, gather, farm, and trade the ingredients of the dish they choose to enter in the contest.

With the support of the village of Verduno, Slow Food Italy and the University of Gastronomic Sciences, on Saturday, May 13, the third annual Local Wild Food Challenge Verduno will take place at the Castello di Verduno. It is a weekend of workshops, live music, tasting and learning while exploring local wild food.

In this challenge, dishes may be hot, cold, liquid, frozen, raw, marinated, smoked, seared or even preserved. If you can imagine it, you can create it! All entries are anonymous to our panel of judges, so there is no pressure. All ages, artisans, home cooks, amateurs, and professionals are welcome to join.

LWFC Verduno 6
Photo from last year’s event. Credit: Eugenio Pini

The Local Wild Food Challenge (LWFC) mission is to promote understanding, appreciation, and sustainability of the wild food resources that surround us. The LWFC community believes that the deeper you explore your environment, the more motivated you are to protect it. With this in mind, the events are for the local people, by the local people. Participants will experience the generosity, motivation, raw talent and a positive spirit from all walks of life and diverse cultures. LWFC is educating and energizing people to care for their precious resources, eat better quality and healthier food, and look out for one another.

The event originated in 2008 in New Zealand. Founder Bill Manson, chef and adventurer, designed LWFC to showcase the resourcefulness of local people living in communities where wild food is available. Known to be passionate about wild ingredients in her menu, in 2015 chef Alessandra Buglioni di Monale of Castello di Verduno was introduced to Bill Manson, founder of the Local Wild Food challenge. As like-minded chefs and explorers, they became fast friends and partnered to bring the Local Wild Food Challenge to Verduno.

In 2016, Slow Food and The University of Gastronomic Sciences recognized the Local Wild Food Challenge as an educational forum for food sourcing and wild cuisine creativity. Students, faculty, and administration participated as judges, cooks, and coordinators to help create a weekend of education, entertainment, and community participation.

LWFC Verduno 4
Photo from last year’s event. Credit: Eugenio Pini

In 2017 and 2018 Local Wild Food Challenge events will motivate and gather more than 4,000 competitors and enthusiasts who will organize, travel, compete, taste, and explore wild food at eight events in five countries, including the Local Wild Food Challenge in Verduno, Italy on May 13, 2017.

“To defend biodiversity, we must know it, and to know it, we must explore. We must let curiosity, exploration and the pleasure of discovery guide us. Local Wild Food Challenge is a fantastic opportunity for discussion and knowledge.”
~ Carlo Petrini

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