Driving toward town on North Main Road, you will notice a section that is flanked on both sides by farms. You might also have noticed a sign that reads ‘Slow Food District’. Every time I drive by that sign, I’m left wondering. Hmmm, am I being told to slow down because this is a farm area with animals and vegetables and maybe they require calm and tranquility to reach their fullest potential? (I know, strange thoughts, but true). Or, is ‘Slow Food’ actually a technical term for a special kind of food?
Well, apparently I’m not the only one who has pondered the true meaning behind this cryptic handwritten sign on poster board. My co-worker and I debated this topic just the other day in the office. So, I decided to do a little digging and end the confusion once and for all.
What is Slow Food? According to Slow Food USA™, Slow Food is an idea, a way of living and a way of eating. It is a global, grassrootsmovement with thousands of members around the world that links the pleasure of foodwith a commitment to community and the environment. Slow Food is a national non-profit that believes that everyone has the right to good, clean and fair food.
Good is defined by food created with care from healthy plants and animals. The pleasures of good food can also help to build community and celebrate culture and regional diversity.
Clean is food that is as good for the planet as it is for our bodies. It is grown and harvested with methods that have a positive impact on our local ecosystems and promotes biodiversity.
Fair food is food that should be accessible to all, regardless of income, and produced by people who are treated with dignity and justly compensated for their labor.
Through volunteer projects, national advocacy campaigns, training and education, Slow Food USA™ carries out its vision of a world where all people can eat food that is good for them, good for the people who grow it and good for the planet.
For more information, visit www.slowfoodusa.org/
Rhode Island’s local chapters are Slow Food Rhode Island, Providence and Slow Food, University of Rhode Island.