The Slow Food International Council are meeting in Istanbul from June 14-16 to discuss key strategies for the next year. More than 50 councilors coming from 40 countries, representing all continents, are attending this first meeting of the council since it was restructured at the Slow Food International Congress in 2012.
Slow Food’s vice-president Alice Waters, celebrated American chef and food educator, will join the many other international delegates such as agronomist Edward Mukiibi from Uganda, who will provide an update on the Thousand Gardens in Africa project, and Joris Lohman, one of the leaders of the quickly developing Slow Food Youth Network.
The meeting will serve as the occasion to globally relaunch the Ark of Taste, the Slow Food Foundation for Biodiversity project to catalogue foods at risk of disappearing. With the help of local convivia and communities, Slow Food will be focusing its efforts on identifying traditional products tied to specific regions and increasing Ark nominations.
The choice of Istanbul as the host city for the council meeting marks Slow Food’s new focus on emerging countries. With four convivia (local groups), Istanbul symbolizes the recent success in growing the network in new regions. Slow Food has been working in Turkey and across the Balkans through the Essedra project to identify and protect local products that can support rural development.
With recent events in Istanbul, especially at Gezi Park, Slow Food expresses its support of the protesters' pleas. In the past week, some of our members in Turkey have joined in to support the construction of a vegetable garden in the park: to continue the fight to protect the few remaining green areas of the city as well as promote the idea of a more sustainable development through democratic participation.
More information: Slow Food International Council 2013 press release