Terra Madre 2010: Apply by May 15th

Terra MadreEvery two years, Slow Food International hosts Terra Madre – a unique conference, in Torino, Italy. This year, Terra Madre will be held October 21 – 25, 2010. It is an international forum that gathers sustainable food producers, farmers, cooks, educators and activists from around the world to share their stories and traditions, as well as their innovative solutions for keeping small-scale agriculture and sustainable food production alive and well. The delegate application period is now open, and all of the application information is below.

The Slow Food Seattle community has an abundance of eligible and qualified people in each of the categories: sustainable food producers, farmers, cooks, educators, and activists. The activist category is new this year, and encourages a wide variety of committed people to apply. Slow Food USA wants to select a delegation with a diverse set of interests and experience. Note the section below outlining what they term “food communities” who might apply as a complete unit.

Terra Madre - Torino, ItalySlow Food Seattle sent two delegates in 2008: graduate student and now Slow Food Seattle board member, Arwen Kimmel and board member and seafood/fishing advocate, Amy Grondin. Our chapter raised money to help Arwen offset her airfare, and they both returned to share this tremendous experience with our members.

Terra Madre was a once in a lifetime experience for me personally and professionally. As a graduate student I made invaluable contacts and collected in both the Earth Workshops and from Presidia Vendors that have helped to frame my dissertation work in chocolate and coffee. Personally I made friends I think I will have forever, ate food that was life-changing and gained an even greater appreciation for Slow Food and its goals.

- Arwen Kimmel

Delegates are chosen from all over the world. Slow Food International provides accommodations, meals, and local transportation. Observers, who must also apply, may attend any conference event, but must provide their own accommodations, food, and local transportation.

Good. Clean. and Fair.

The Salone del Gusto – the world’s largest artisan food marketplace – is held concurrently, in part for delegates to gain a deeper sense of how small-scale sustainable producers can market their products effectively.

We urge anyone motivated to join the world community in finding ways to make the food system better to consider applying. If you have any questions about Terra Madre, or the application process, please send them to terramadre@slowfoodusa.org or info@slowfoodseattle.org.

Details from Slow Food USA:

What is Terra Madre?
This is the fourth edition of the conference, held biennially in Torino. It was started for small-scale sustainable food producers from across the world – currently 150 countries – to talk about sustainable production and inspire each other and share best practices.  It now brings together people from all the links in the chain – farmers, educators, cooks, activists, students.
This year, the conference will be smaller by 25% across the board (not just the US delegation). Even with the size reduction, it is still a very large conference, with thousands of people in attendance.

What it means to be a delegate:
Paid conference attendance, housing and food and ground transport in Italy (paid by Slow Food International). Delegates are responsible for US ground transport and round-trip airfare to/from Italy.

What we’re looking for:
Food producers, educators, activists, cooks, students – people who will bring diverse experiences to share and who want to bring their experience back home.  In particular: people who have never been before.

Bringing Terra Madre home:
We know some of you have expressed disappointment when delegates have attended but not connected with their Slow Food community back home. We’re always looking for ideas on how to help those connections happen. For example, if you are helping to fund someone go to Terra Madre, it is reasonable to ask them to come back and give a talk to your chapter.

To download Arwen Kimmel’s PPT presentation that she shared after returning from Terra Madre 2008, click here. (PDF – 28MB)

New people:
We are eager to bring new people to the event so the maximum number of people have a chance to experience what Terra Madre has to offer.

How to apply:
To be considered, applicants must be at least 18 years of age, and a food producer (e.g., farmers, fisher-people, wild food gatherers, etc.), cook, educator, student or activist.

You must complete and submit both parts of the application by May 15th (postmark date for the mailed portion). We will let you know the results of the application process by June 15th, 2010. We will contact you when we have received both parts of the application.

U.S. delegates pay for their own air travel to and from Italy, and ground travel in the U.S. Acceptance as a delegate includes conference attendance, in-country travel and meals, and housing for the duration of the event (an approximate value of $1,500). Please note that delegate housing is available only for delegates, and not for spouses or family members.

We encourage you to apply in a group as a food community:

  1. Geographic community: e.g. several different types of food producers who sell at the same farmers market could apply as the Ann Arbor Farmers Market food community; a chef and some of the food producers who supply to her restaurant could apply together as the Raleigh Growers and Chefs.
  2. Shared Production community: e.g. Gravenstein Apple Growers or American Raw Milk Cheese producers.

Representing yourself/selves as a food community is a wonderful way to demonstrate the ways in which different links in a production chain work together.

Application, Part 1:
Part one of the application is here: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/NJBRQ86 It should take no more than ten minutes to complete. If you are unable to fill this out online, please contact the Slow Food USA office at terramadre@slowfoodusa.org.

Application, Part 2:
Once you have completed part one, you can use part two of the application to be creative, and share your work. Please send in part two via regular mail:

c/o Terra Madre Coordinator
Slow Food USA
20 Jay St, Suite M04
Brooklyn, NY 11201

Please answer all of the below questions that are applicable. Feel free to cut and paste language from a current source, such as your farm/restaurant/program website. Creativity is encouraged!

There is a minimum word count of 400 words (no maximum). The more you tell us, the more information we will have to make our decision.

Food producer: please describe your farm, facility, etc. Describe the guiding philosophy; growing practices; certification; labor practices, and anything else you think is important for us to know.

Cook: please describe the role you play at your establishment. Please describe your food philosophy, sourcing practices, how you work with (or would like to work with) producers, and anything else you would like us to know.

Educator: please describe the program you lead or work for. What is its guiding philosophy, structure, pedagogy?

Activist: please describe your organization or project, your role there, and your goals (both organizational and personal).

For all applicants:

  1. Include pictures of you, your farm, your restaurant, your school garden, your project, your food festival.
  2. Feel free to include testimonials from your students, employees, customers, etc.
  3. Please let us know if you are connected to the local Slow Food chapter in your community. If so, which one? How?
  4. Why do you want to come to Terra Madre?
  5. How do you intend to “bring Terra Madre home” to your community?

For more information, check out the U.S. Terra Madre Network portion of our web site.

Terra Madre

This week is Savor Bristol Bay Salmon Week in Seattle: Grab your fork and Vote!

Slow Food Seattle has partnered with Trout Unlimited to kick off Savor Bristol Bay Salmon Week in Seattle from November 15 -21. It is time to ‘Vote with Your Fork to Save Bristol Bay’ and the historic runs of sockeye salmon that have returned there for over 6000 years. One of our nation’s last great wild salmon fisheries is up in Bristol Bay, Alaska.  It is your support and the power you wield in the seafood marketplace that will help us to ensure that our largest wild salmon fishery doesn’t become one of the largest open-pit mines in the world.

If developed, the proposed Pebble Mine would be one of the world’s largest open-pit mines, located in the headwaters of Bristol Bay’s most productive salmon rivers. This massive open-pit mine would alter, if not destroy, the region’s pristine spawning habitat and generate billions of tons of waste containing metals toxic to fish. The mine not only threatens the world’s largest sockeye salmon fishery but also the livelihoods of thousands of fishermen, many of whom live in the Pacific Northwest. And it’s not just humans that rely on the annual return of wild salmon. Wild salmon are at the very middle of the food chain of Bristol Bay, feeding bears, whales, sea birds, sea lions and marine mammals of all types.

Every time you buy and eat wild salmon you are helping to protect the future of these fish. Your choice to eat wild salmon states that as a consumer you value and want wild salmon swimming in the ocean and served on your dinner plate. Your purchase not only feeds your family with highly nutritious fish, it supports the families that have for generations relied on commercial fishing for their livelihood. The dollars you spend create an economic incentive for fisheries managers and government agencies to continue to find a sustainable balance that keeps a wild salmon delicious, sustainable, renewable natural resource.

Here is a list of restaurants serving Bristol Bay Sockeye:

For more details on Savor Bristol Bay Salmon Week please follow the link below:
www.savebristolbay.org/red-gold-documentary/wild-salmon-week

Read about Bristol Bay salmon in today’s news:
www.thenewstribune.com/news/local/story/955385.html?story_link=email_msg
seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/localnews/2010275781_apuswildalaskasalmon1stldwritethru.html

Vote With Your Fork!

Slow Food Seattle co-sponsors KPLU Buy Local Campaign KPLU 88.5 National Public Radio

Slow Food Seattle cordially invites members to write and submit story ideas, personal anecdotes, food-related content and full articles on behalf of our local chapter. Chosen submissions will be included on the KPLU Buy Local website.

In regards to content – Slow Food Seattle would like to use this platform to educate the public using our local and national mission as a guide for all submissions (see below). Otherwise, writers have free rein.  Ideas may include:

.Local, good, clean and fair food/beverage production
.Profiles of food personalities, entrepreneurs or features on like-minded non-profit groups that demonstrate Slow and Local by example
.Local manifestations of Slow Food USA programs
.Local food values or rights work

All submissions will be subject to review – as long as it stays within the guidelines of public radio – no calls to action, or use of comparative words such as largest, best, oldest if it sounds like something heard on a commercial station –it probably doesn’t belong on a public radio station.

Slow Food Seattle is the first organization that has offered to contribute regular content for KPLU so we’re open to ideas on how we can optimize our participation to help educate and inspire our local community about good, clean and fair food for all.

Please direct questions and submit ideas directly to co-chair Lucy Norris at lucy@slowfoodseattle.org.  This is a purely volunteer assignment.  No compensation is being offered for this effort but this is a fine opportunity for members to share their voices and represent Slow Food at the same time.

Thanks in advance! We are excited to engage our members to strengthen the local food community in this way. So far we’ve submitted articles ranging from Community Supported Agriculture to Washington’s sustainable seafood.For more information: www.kplu.org/buylocal

Washington’s Wonderful Wild Chinook Dinner

On May 13, Slow Food Seattle, Ray’s Boathouse, Washington Trollers Association and Makah Tribal Nation hosted a reception and dinner  celebrating the first of the season’s Washington troll caught Chinook salmon.  The delicious and sustainable multi-course salmon dinner featured wine pairings carefully chosen by Kristen and James Michael of the Chinook Winery in Prosser, Washington. Chef Peter Birk complimented the meal with a seasonal selection of locally farmed, seasonal produce.

Chef Birk kicked off the evening with a warm welcome followed by introductory remarks from Slow Food Seattle’s Co-Chair, Lucy Norris.  The mission of Slow Food comes down to a very simple idea:  food should be good, clean and fair.  To bring this point home, guests enjoyed the evening learning and tasting how and why Washington troll caught Chinook is a fine example of good, clean and fair food.

Following the first course of grav lox, Slow Food Seattle board member and Sustainable Seafood Consultant, Amy Grondin led a discussion and Q&A with fishermen from the Makah Tribe and Washington Trollers Association. Fishing season for troll caught Chinook opened May 1st on the Washington coast.  In addition to catching salmon, fishermen are also stewards of this finned resource. We learned how fishermen are working with scientists to assure that Washington has healthy populations of wild salmon for decades to come. From habitat restoration to participating in wild salmon management with the Washington Dept. of Fish and Wildlife, sustainability is taken seriously by the fleet.

Physical and sensory characteristics revealed what the salmon ate and where the fish traveled through spawning.  Having fed almost exclusively on krill, the roasted Chinook had a lighter flesh and nuttier taste, while the grilled Chinook, which ate mostly very small forage fish, was a deep red hue with rich, silky fattiness.  There were other differences noted to where the fish was caught: originating from both Fraser and Columbia River tributaries.

At the end of the evening, Amy made an announcement that a deal had been negotiated with Seattle area Whole Foods Markets.  For the first time, select local markets are now carrying Washington troll caught Chinook in their stores until the end of the 2009 season.  We applaud Amy’s tireless efforts to advocate for sustainable salmon habitats as well as the fishing and coastal communities who depend on fishing for livelihoods.

A Word about the Slow Food Ark of Taste

Washington Marbled Chinook Salmon was added to the Slow Food Ark of Taste in 2006.  The Ark of Taste is an international program that seeks, first and foremost, to save an economic, social and cultural heritage of a diverse variety of animal breeds, seafood, fruit and vegetables, cured meats, cheeses, cereals, pastas, cakes and confectionery.

The mission of the Slow Food Ark of Taste is to preserve traditional tastes and to celebrate them, by introducing them to the Slow Food membership and then to the world.

All of the foods on the Ark of Taste are heritage products that have real economic viability and commercial potential for the communities that grow, produce or harvest them.