Slow Food Germany will join with farmers, environmental activists, consumers and other organizations tomorrow in a national demonstration to denounce genetic engineering, factory farming and export dumping as well as raise the voice for small-scale organic agriculture. The protest, entitled Wir haben es satt! (We’re fed up!), aims to attract the attention of international agricultural ministers and agro-chemical corporations who are meeting in Berlin this week for Grüne Woche (Green Week), and urge leaders to collaborate in the creation of a good, clean and fair agricultural policy.
“Within the framework of Grüne Woche, corporations Monsanto, Müller Milch, BASF and others plan to further their agenda of industrializing farming,” said the group that organized the demonstration. “[These companies] want free markets and millions in additional subsidies for genetically engineered seeds, chemicals and industrial food. They want factory farms instead of family farms - worldwide.”
The facts in Wir haben es satt’s promotional film speak for themselves: Industrial farming in Germany already rears and slaughters 50 million chickens and 27 million pigs per year, Europe imports around 30 million tons of GM soy per year, factory farmed animal are fed genetically engineered fodder, and 68% of milk and dairy exports end up in developing countries, destroying local markets. All these trends are continuing to grow.
“We call on [our leaders] to get out of the GMO business immediately, deny patents on life, stop subsidies to industrialized livestock producers, and stop dumping these exports in developing countries,” says the group. “Politics behind closed doors is a thing of the past. Now we decide what we eat.”
Slow Food Germany will be hosting an information stand at the Brandenburg gate, the end destination of the march, providing information about the philosophy and objectives of the Slow Food movement. Chef and activist Wam Kat, who was heavily involved in Terra Madre and Terra Madre Day in 2010, will prepare a hot soup based on simple and local products alongside Terra Madre cook Otto Vogelmann who will serve a ‘risotto’ with products from the latest German Presidium, Franconian Grünkern.
“It is a great pleasure to see so many associations and German citizens mobilize for food that can be better, cleaner and more fair,” said Slow Food International President Carlo Petrini. “The moment has come to put food back at the center of our lives, from a personal, family and also collective point of view, involving producers as well as goverments. To ask for transparency, traceability and the possibility to have good, local, fresh and seasonal products must be a priority for everybody as food is not a mere commodity, but the main vehicle of safeguarding our health, pleasure, environment and culture. To reduce it to a commodity analogous to fuel or a mass-produced industrial product ultimately strips it of its value, significance and quality. We must reverse this course through our choices as individuals, which always carry a great significance.”
For more information:
Slow Food Germany
Wir haben es satt!