What Is Slow Food > Slow Food USA Blog
Posted on Thu, July 17, 2008 by Jerusha Klemperer
Some Thursday links for your all:
Posted on Fri, July 04, 2008 by Jerusha Klemperer
Happy July 4th to all of you and apologies for a slow week of postings here at the blog–the Slow Food USA offices have been closed this week.If you haven't already, please check out the new Slow Food Nation blog–postings from writers around the country (including Jerusha from our SFUSA offices), generating conversation in and around food as a lead up to our big big event in San Francisco over Labor Day. They're chronicling the planting of the victory garden (great pics), discussing Northern California cuisine, etc. And don't forget that tickets are already on sale–here.
Posted on Thu, June 26, 2008 by Jerusha Klemperer
Last December we interviewed Robert LaValva about his efforts to keep NYC's former Fulton Fish Market a public market for New Yorkers. Decembers' market went off without a hitch; despite snow and sleet and toe-chilling temperatures, New Yorkers came out in droves to buy wild foraged edibles from Vermont, sample local cheeses, taste New Jersey gelato, etc.
This Sunday, June 29th, from 11 am - 4 pm, the market returns, this time during market high season! For those of you living in NYC, Westchester, Hudson Valley, Long Island, New Jersey, Connecticut, etc., come and taste the best of what this foodshed has to offer, and come support the notion of a public market that showcases the best of local, sustainable food, of public spaces remaining public and being used to good end. Because, as Kim Severson covers in yesterday's NY Times, there are those folks, namely developers, who'd like it to shake down slightly differently.
Slow Food USA will have an info table there–if you do come out to shop, come say hello!
Posted on Tue, June 24, 2008 by Jerusha Klemperer
There are only 3 days left to bid on this year's exciting list of donated items. On Thursday, June 26th at 3pm EST Slow Food USA's Online Auction will come to a close.
We're auctioning off a wonderful wood-fired oven from Los Angeles Ovenworks, a pair of VIP tickets to any Jack Johnson Summer '08 concert date of your choice, B&B stays in places such as Italy, the Appalachian Mountains, Vermont and Texas, a whole host of unique and delicious offerings from some of the finest US artisanal food producers, autographed books by authors such as Michael Pollan, photographer Annie Liebovitz, and a number of cookbook authors. Other items include cooking classes with renowned chefs, private wine tastings and tours, and of course, no Slow Food auction would be complete without an extensive listing of dinners and brunches at some of the country's most talked about restaurants and cocktail lounges.
So, go to Slow Food USA's Auction Homepage and place your bids! Remember: 100% of proceeds from the winning bid goes directly to support Slow Food USA's efforts to support our network of farmers, chefs, educators and students who are working to create a food system that is good, clean and fair!
Now that's shopping you can feel good about.
Posted on Tue, June 17, 2008 by Jerusha Klemperer
Iowa experienced the flood of the century 15 years ago. That, of course, was a different century.
Over the last week Iowans have seen floods unlike any in living memory. 1400 city blocks in Cedar Rapids were inundated with water up to 11 feet deep. 16 University of Iowa buildings were flooded. Interstates 80 and 380 were closed by water flowing 2 feet over their bridges. Levees have given way in Des Moines and Columbus Junction. 36,000 Iowans are newly homeless.
All this will have lasting impact on our state, but the larger impact may be felt across the country and around the world. An estimated 2 million acres of freshly planted farmland is under water. Statewide, about 20 percent of soybeans and 10 percent of all corn normally grown is either lost or at risk of being lost, according to the Iowa Department of Agriculture. The smaller sustainable family farms of the region are hit particularly hard because they lack many of the federal protections afforded the large commodity growers, but those big corporate farms grow roughly a third of the corn and soy in this country and the ripple effects on our already weakened economy will spread just like the floodwaters. Even the stockpiles left from last season's bumper-buster harvest (those that were not themselves ruined by floodwaters), cannot be shipped to market because railroad bridges are closed or washed out completely and the Mississippi River is closed to barge traffic along Iowa's entire eastern border.
Closer to home, my dear friend Susan Jutz, director of the area's largest CSA, lost her 102-year-old barn to the storms. While some CSAs have lost entire crops and acres of land, the CSAs that went unhurt are trying to get their food to families who have lost their homes.
83 of Iowa's 99 counties are state and/or federal disaster areas. Whole towns are evacuated. Family businesses lost. Restaurants underwater. The rebuilding process will take years and be in the billions of dollars.
Slow Food Iowa is in the process of determining what it can do to assist the affected farmers, wineries and restaurants. We'll soon be turning to the wider Slow Food world for help. Meanwhile your advice and your prayers will be most welcome.
Posted on Mon, June 16, 2008 by Jerusha Klemperer
It's that time of year again… Slow Food USA is pleased to announce that the 4th Annual Online Auction is now LIVE! Visit the Slow Food USA auction web page for a complete listing of all of this year's items up for grabs.
You can search all available items, place your bid and track competing ones starting today, June 16th, through Thursday June 26th. Remember to check back with the eBay site frequently to make sure your offer still stands, and that these great items are sure to be yours!
Posted on Thu, June 05, 2008 by Jerusha Klemperer
Here in New York City we've finally made the annual swift jump from late winter straight to summer. (We have heard there is a season called spring; here it is merely the name of a street). That being said, summer is a glorious thing, full of long-awaited produce, and outdoor fun–like picnics.
Last summer, Slow Food USA partnered with several other farms and local food organizations around the country to produce five American Traditions picnics, and we've now got instructions on our website for how you and your food community can plan one for this summer.
"Aren't all picnics an American Tradition?" you might ask. Well, these picnics celebrate endangered foods–such as those found on the Slow Food USA Ark of Taste. Given the arrival of the Renewing America's Fod Traditions Endangered Foods book, and our new partnership with LocalHarvest (both reported on here, last month), now is a perfect time to plan one of your own.
How do you plan an American Traditions Picnic?
Producing a meal or dish with endangered ingredients has great rewards—the ingredients are extraordinary in flavor, color, smell, feel and taste. Before the fork hits the plate though, many things must happen—farmers need to be consulted, the rare fruit or vegetable may need to be planted, and orders for rare, regional beef, pork, or poultry need to be placed. There (usually) isn't a one-stop shopping destination for endangered foods. So just how do you produce an event with endangered foods?
Check out our website for ideas and directions!
Posted on Wed, June 04, 2008 by Jerusha Klemperer
Tickets for Slow Food Nation go on sale today! After a long lead up and lots of buzzing excitement, it's finally here. For those of you who haven't yet heard the news, Slow Food Nation will be the first-ever American collaborative gathering to unite the growing sustainable food movement and introduce thousands of people to food that is good, clean and fair through enjoyable, accessible and educational activities.
It will take place Labor Day weekend in San Francisco, and you are encouraged to come from near and far to check it out. What is more beautiful (and delicious) than San Fran in late August?
The new website is here.
Today's coverage in the SF Chronicle is here.
The press release follows:
For Immediate Release
SLOW FOOD NATION TO TAKE PLACE IN SAN FRANCISCO LABOR DAY WEEKEND 2008
Largest Celebration of American Food in History
On Eve of the Presidential Election, Gathering Sets New Agenda for a
Sustainable and Healthy Food System
Keynote Speakers Include Wendell Berry, Marion Nestle, Carlo Petrini, Michael Pollan, Eric Schlosser, Vandana Shiva and Alice Waters
San Francisco, CA (June 4, 2008) — Slow Food Nation, the largest celebration of American food in history, will take place in San Francisco over Labor Day weekend (August 29 to September 1, 2008). An unprecedented event, Slow Food Nation will bring together tens of thousands to experience an extraordinary range of activities highlighting the connection between plate and planet. The majority of Slow Food Nation's events will be free and open to the public; certain events are ticketed. Tickets go on sale Wednesday, June 4 at http://www.slowfoodnation.org .
At the peak of harvest season, and on the eve of a Presidential election, Slow Food Nation will bring together local citizens and visitors, farmers and food artisans, political leaders, environmental advocates and health-care experts, community educators and artists. Participants will savor food from across the U.S. at Taste, a 50,000 square foot pavilion; meet farmers and producers at a marketplace surrounding a 10,000 square foot newly-planted urban garden in the heart of the City; learn from visionary speakers; and engage in political discourse to shape a more sustainable food system. Slow Food Nation will also feature a music festival, workshops, films, dinners, hikes and journeys.
"Slow Food Nation will catalyze a huge shift in how Americans perceive and prioritize food. Through the four-day event, we hope to build momentum and demand for an American food system that is safer, healthier and more socially just," said Anya Fernald, Executive Director of Slow Food Nation. "Our founder Alice Waters has set the stage for a delicious revolution through decades of leadership and advocacy and our parent organization, Slow Food U.S.A., has built a wide membership base across America. By creating a framework for a deeper environmental and community-based connection to our food and farmers, Slow Food Nation will help participants learn how everyday choices affect our well-being, our culture and the health of the planet."
Highlights of the four-day event include:
Saturday, August 30; 11 am – 3 pm; 5 pm – 9 pm
Sunday, August 31, 11 am – 3 pm; 6 pm – 9 pm
Fort Mason/Festival Pavilion
Tickets: $45 – $65
Taste is Slow Food Nation's grand celebration of good, clean and fair food from across the United States. In-depth taste workshops and hands-on experiences with quality, process and distinguishing flavor factors will connect visitors with the origins and true value of our food. Each of the 15 uniquely designed pavilions showcases a different food through on-site demonstrations and tastes. Featured foods include: Beer, Bread, Charcuterie, Cheese, Chocolate, Coffee, Fish, Honey & Preserves, Ice Cream, Native Foods, Olive Oil, Pickles & Chutney, Spirits, Tea and Wine. The Green Kitchen takes place here, where acclaimed chefs will demonstrate techniques for making simple, everyday dishes sustainable.
Food for Thought Speaker Series
Friday, August 29, 9 am – 4:30 pm and Saturday, August 30, 11:30 am – 10 pm
Civic Center/Herbst Theater and Milton Marks Auditorium
Tickets: $5 - $25
Featuring leading thinkers, community organizers, journalists and activists discussing current food issues, from policy and planning to education and climate change. Speakers include: Wendell Berry, Marion Nestle, Carlo Petrini, Michael Pollan, Eric Schlosser, Vandana Shiva and Alice Waters.
Friday, August 29 - Sunday, August 31; 9 am – 4 pm
Civic Center Plaza
The Market showcases 60 California farmers and artisans growing and producing good, clean and fair food. Visitors can purchase directly from the producer and learn the significance of regionality, diversity and artisanality in the Bay Area's food system. Next to the Market, "Slow on the Go" demonstrates how "fast" slow food can be. Visitors can purchase affordable street food from San Francisco's diverse ethnic community, prepared with fully sustainable, source-verified ingredients.
Slow Food Nation Victory Garden
Friday, August 29 – Sunday, August 31; 9 am – 4 pm
Civic Center Plaza
In collaboration with Victory Gardens 2008+, Slow Food Nation will herald the era of self-sufficiency through the creation of an ornamental edible garden in the heart of San Francisco's Civic Center. Planted on the same site as 60 years ago during World War II, the Slow Food Nation Victory Garden demonstrates the potential of a truly local agriculture practice and brings together and promotes Bay Area urban gardening organizations, while producing high quality food for those in need. The Slow Food Nation Victory Garden will be introduced to the public on Saturday, July 12 in a ceremony with Mayor Gavin Newsom and Slow Food Nation Founder Alice Waters.
Slow Food Rocks
Saturday, August 30; 11 am – 7 pm and Sunday, August 31; 11 am – 5:30 pm
Fort Mason/Great Meadow
For tickets visit: http://www.slowfoodrocks.com <http://www.slowfoodrocks.com/> ; Tickets on sale June 10
Featuring: Gnarls Barkley; G Love & Special Sauce; the John Butler Trio; Medeski Martin & Wood; New Pornographers and Ozomatli. Additional major headliners to be announced soon. A two-day outdoor music festival featuring the biggest names in rock, folk, hip-hop, soul, jazz and world music. Produced by the Festival Network, this is one of only three public events permitted on the Great Meadow the entire year.
Petition Launch for a New Vision for Agriculture and Food Policy for the 21st Century
Thursday, August 28; 4 – 5 pm
Civic Center/Slow Food Nation Victory Garden
Hosted in conjunction with Roots of Change (ROC), Slow Food Nation will introduce a Vision Statement for Agricultural and Food Policy for the 21st Century drafted by notable activists, practitioners, producers and eaters across the country. The Vision Statement will be a call to action to frame future food and agricultural policies, including the next Farm Bill, to benefit all Americans.
Posted on Mon, May 19, 2008 by Jerusha Klemperer
If there's a food producer in your life/community who you think is doing innovative work in sustainable agriculture and whom you think has been a leader in supporting their regional food system, consider nominating him or her for the 6th Annual Glynwood Harvest Award.
This year's categories are:
Click here for nomination details and to make an electronic submission. On their site you can also read more about the Glynwood Center (which helps communities address change in ways that conserve local culture and natural resources while strengthening economic well-being), as well as read about past Harvest Award winners. Nominations must be postmarked or e-mailed no later than July 21, 2008.
Posted on Mon, April 28, 2008 by Jerusha Klemperer
The UN has scheduled a 2-day meeting in Bern, Switzerland, to discuss solutions to the escalating global food crisis. It will surely also be a hot topic of conversation when the Commission on Sustainable Development begins meeting at the UN next week; the main topics up for discussion include rural development, land, biodiversity, and desertification (more on this meeting in the coming weeks, since one of our staffers will be attending).
And over at The Nation, an interesting take on it all, with this sentiment from Wisconsin dairy farmer Jim Goodman:
"So,they finally figured out, after all these years of pushing globalization and genetically modified [GM] seeds, that instead of feeding the world we've created a food system that leaves more people hungry. If they'd listened to farmers instead of corporations, they would've known this was going to happen."
And, over at Grist, some interesting quotes and ensuing comments on the origins of the crisis–origins about which, at this point, we can only educatedly speculate.
Slow Food International also runs a publishing company, Slow Food Editore, which specializes in tourism, food and wine. The library now contains about 40 titles and houses Slow, the award-winning quarterly herald of taste and culture, available in five languages: Italian, English, French, German and Spanish.