Slow Food

CHEESE 2005 – Official Inauguration

Italy - 16 Sep 05

‘Cheese 2005’ was officially inaugurated this afternoon at a ceremony attended by Gianni Alemanno, the Italian Minister of Agriculture, Mercedes Bresso, President of the Piedmont Regional Authority, Camillo Scimone, Mayor of Bra, and Carlo Petrini, President di Slow Food.

”I’m happy to be here in Bra,” said the minister, “ a town that is now a symbol of glocalism, a point of reference for the world. This, chronologically speaking has been Slow Food’s first major success.

“Events like ‘Cheese’ are important at this, a time of growing concern for a shallow approach to agriculture and quality food production on the part of the world’s leading institutions. Bush’s suggestion to the UNO that all support to agriculture should be abolished is understandable if it refers to protectionist distortions, but it would totally cancel this type of production in countries of advanced development.

“It’s not true that favoring agriculture in advanced countries means penalizing that of developing countries. Only the food multinationals would benefit from this type of operation. Raising the profile of one identity doesn’t mean erasing another: it means creating dialog. Only in this way is it possible to improve agribusiness and allow each people its own agriculture.”

The Mayor of Bra stressed how, “The strength of ‘Cheese’ lies in its capacity to create team play by involving both private and public players”.

Carlo Petrini spun off a few facts and figures about Cheese 2005: 250 exhibitors, 10 EU countries 20 more from the rest of the world, 49 Slow Presidia. Speaking of the latter, concrete projects to safeguard biodiversity, he commented that, “This is the food we want. It is increasingly our job to involve the food communities of many countries round the world. This will become even more evident when, in October 2006, we’ll stage the second edition of ‘Terra Madre’ in Turin”.

Mercedes Bresso, finally, reasserted the Piedmont Regional Authority’s support for ‘Cheese’, and announced that its commitment with Slow Food will continue with the realization of ‘Terra Madre’ next year.