About Slow Food

From the Slow Food USA website:

Our Mission

Slow Food USA envisions a future food system that is based on the principles of high quality and taste, environmental sustainability, and social justice – in essence, a food system that is good, clean and fair. We seek to catalyze a broad cultural shift away from the destructive effects of an industrial food system and fast life; toward the regenerative cultural, social and economic benefits of a sustainable food system, regional food traditions, the pleasures of the table, and a slower and more harmonious rhythm of life.

What We Do

Slow Food USA is a non-profit educational organization dedicated to supporting and celebrating the food traditions of North America through programs and activities dedicated to Taste Education, Defending Biodiversity and Building Food Communities. Slow Food USA believes that pleasure and quality in everyday life can be achieved by slowing down, respecting the convivial traditions of the table and celebrating the diversity of the earth’s bounty.

Slow Food U.S.A. oversees Slow Food activities in North America, including the support and promotion of the activities of 170 local chapters, each called a “convivium,” that carry out the Slow Food mission on a local level. Each convivium offers educational events and public outreach that promote taste education, that advocate sustainability and biodiversity and that connect producers and “co-producers.”

History of the Movement

In 1986, the founding father of the Slow Food Movement, Carlo Petrini recognized that the industrialization of food was standardizing taste and leading to the annihilation of thousands of food varieties and flavors. He wanted to reach out to consumers and demonstrate to them that they have choices over fast food and supermarket homogenization. He rallied his friends and his community, and began to speak out at every available opportunity about the effects of a fast culture. Soon after, Petrini realized that in order to keep those alternative food choices alive, it was imperative to be an eco-gastronomic movement—one that is ecologically minded and concerned with sustainability and sees the connection between the plate and the planet. With the preservation of taste at the forefront, he sought to support and protect small growers and artisanal producers, support and protect the physical environment, and promote biodiversity. Today, the organization that Petrini and his colleagues founded is active in over 100 countries and has a worldwide membership of over 80,000.