RE: Slow Food
It completely depends on the local group which items get priority. Around
here, everyone means well, but it's just so much easier to do expensive
meals with Philadelphia chefs that the other items don't tend to be done.
seems unfair to assume that just because someone is involved with Slow Food
they aren't doing anything else of that nature. The community gardens piece
is a VERY strong component, which is why I got on this listserve.
Personally, I did a garlic tasting with the Slow Food Philadelphia group
last year. The event was held at a small CSA farm in Lancaster
County. Unfortunately, the CSA farmers simply threw their produce on the
table and did not label it or talk about it at all -- so instead of the
interesting heirlooms I know their produce was, it just looked like a bunch
of funny-looking vegetables. So, folks loved me (since I talked about the
different types of garlic and had lots of different "taste experiences"
available), but were bored with the farmers. So, the "Harvest Picnic" has
been eliminated -- it's just more interesting to go to a unique restaurant
to experience a menu one wouldn't usually find or to do "tasting" with the
various speciality food vendors (who are jumping on board this movement
with both feet as it means increasing sales and expanding their customer base).
Slow Food Philadelphia also tried to sign folks up for CSA produce, but
with insufficient education about the risks and our killer drought this
summer, it wasn't a positive experience -- so folks dropped out
I'd love to be more involved (and I'm on the announcement list), but the
events are simply out of my price range -- especially with a husband who
was laid off and is trying to develop his own business.
The Slow Food movement SHOULD be encouraging the use of local foods, but in
areas where the high-end folks are more plentiful and more organized, it's
shifting to, in the words of Mark Winne, "just another gourmet eating
club." For those of you who are able to use this movement to your
advantage -- go for it! Hopefully, the Slow Food groups in the high-rent
districts will be encouraged by your efforts and be inspired to look at
who's growing in their own backyards.
Dorene Pasekoff, Coordinator
St. John's United Church of Christ Organic Community Garden
A mission of
St. John's United Church of Christ, 315 Gay Street, Phoenixville, PA 19460
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