Slow Food Nation

By Jon Duyvejonck

You are eating bland, tasteless food, that is degrading the environment, causing the loss of centuries of agricultural traditions, and virtually enslaves most of the world’s subsistence farmers. That is one of the conclusions in Carlo Petrini’s 2007 book entitled Slow Food Nation. Mr Petrini is proposing a “food revolution” that not only results in a more traditional agribusiness model, but also reorganizes our communities centered around local food production.

The goal of this new food model is to produce food that is “good, clean, and fair.” To address this problem, he recommends that the world’s nations need to adopt the science of gastronomy.  Universities need to implement a new curriculum that produces gastronomes who are experts in all aspects of food production from the farm to the table.

Mr. Petrini argues that our current agricultural economy is not only unsustainable, but traps farmers in low wage jobs.  It also results in the loss of their locally adapted food varieties that developed over centuries, and replaces them with food choices imposed on them by large multinational corporations.

The Slow Food Nation model appears eerily similar to the socialistic farm communes of the past. It also fails to address how such a model could be achieved, given that it would require the large multinational corporations to relinquish their monopoly on what we eat, how it is grown, and how impoverished farm workers are compensated.

Join the book discussion on May 16 at the Moline Library at 5:45PM.

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