29 August 2008

Slow Food Congress

300 leaders from around the United States converged on San Francisco today to discuss the future of Slow Food USA. As one might expect the day started out with people talking about the anniversary of Martin Luther King JR.'s I have a Dream speech. Now matter who you are or where you live, I think that the thought of that speech delivers vivid pictures to your cortex. On August 28th, 1963 Dr. King had just finished giving a speech. The next person on the stage was a musician. She asked Dr. King, "What is your Dream?" He responded, without forethought. It is all history after that. Today, a black man accepted the nomination as a candidate of the United States of America. Nothing could ever top this as the definition of America. I am proud as an American today.
On the food front we have many celebrations to look forward to. The feelings of all the leaders of Slow Food in one room was electrifying. Josh Viertel stepped to the microphone. He was announced as the new President of Slow Food USA last night. He magnetized the electorate with his speech of what food culture should be. Talking of a movement of seeing, touching, and analysing. Too often a society will look at food one or 2 of the ways, but, seldom all 3. It is important to look at food in the total package. Using all of your senses and reflecting on it. He seems to be a wonderful visionary, and, I am looking forward to where Slow Food USA will go under his direction.
The leaders approved a new vision for Slow Food USA today. We saw a new slowfoodusa.org so live. We have all new brochures that were released. It is a very exciting time for the organization and where we are going. Not the least of which is with political activism.
We were lucky enough to take part in the release and signing of the "declaration for healthy food and agriculture" This document will go through a 90 day review period before heading across the USA to be taken to congress. This is a fascinating document that was developed by a non-partisan group of people that believe in slow food's principles of Good, Clean and Fair food.
I look forward to the next several days at Slow Food Nation and the next several years with Slow Food USA.
Chef Thom England

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