Terra Madre Salone del Gusto 2024, Slow Food’s flagship event, mobilizes communities worldwide around agroecology

09 July 2024

This edition will be an incubator of solutions for transforming food systems.

From September 26 to 30 in Turin’s Parco Dora (Italy), Terra Madre Salone del Gusto 2024 will mobilize Slow Food delegates and activists from over 100 countries as they gather around the theme of agroecology.

Terra Madre, the largest international event dedicated to food politics, sustainable agriculture, and the environment, is organized by Slow Food, the Piedmont Region and the City of Turin. Over the years, this biennial event has engaged a wide variety of issues and topics as Slow Food endeavors to envision and realize a better future through food. There are also themes and efforts that are renewed year after year: raising awareness about our daily food choices, supporting and promoting the collective efforts of communities, and advocating for better food policies and practices in both public and private institutions. The focus of Terra Madre 2024 will be re-establishing and reinforcing the relationship between humans and nature. Food is the essential link between nature and culture and, through Terra Madre, Slow Food shows us the way forward, blazing a new path toward a healthier relationship with nature through food. The food we eat connects us to the land, the soil, and the sea, and is an integral part of our identities.

Slow Food and Agroecology

The global industrial food system is not delivering health and quality nutrition to all humanity. On the contrary, it is driving environmental degradation and biodiversity loss. We need a profound transformation to meet the challenges of persistent malnutrition and rural poverty aggravated by the proliferating consequences of climate change. (HLPE 2019)

“The Slow Food philosophy is strongly intertwined with agroecology, as we highlighted in our new Agroecology Brief . Both are rooted in rebuilding relationships between agriculture and the environment, between food systems and society, and between farmers, food artisans and citizens. Agroecology’s focus on sustainable farming, fair distribution, quality over quantity, and environmental responsibility aligns closely with the Slow Food mission of ensuring good, clean and fair food for all. The question is not how to feed the world but how to nourish the population while preserving the planet. The transition to agroecology is urgent and requires the commitment and perseverance of all actors in the food system,” says Slow Food President Edward Mukiibi.

Agroecology encourages and enables communities to develop diversified agrifood systems. To do so, people across food systems work in partnership, leveraging their local knowledge and cultural values in a reflective and iterative way that fosters mutual learning among researchers and practitioners, as well as the horizontal spread of knowledge from farmer to farmer and between other actors along the food chain.

The agroecological transition that is called for is based on recognizing all ways in which food production, distribution, and consumption affect communities and the natural environment; it stresses the strategic relevance of addressing the food system holistically, rather than focusing exclusively on food production. “Slow Food is working worldwide to support this transition, and Terra Madre 2024 will be a milestone, where agroecology will have the place of honor,” adds Mukiibi.

The program for Terra Madre Salone del Gusto, available here, includes conferences with prominent international experts who will speak on the most urgent topics related to the environment, food biodiversity, and food access. The debates and conferences will address the climate crisis and its consequences for humans and nature; agroecology understood as agriculture that takes the side of nature; the ways in which corporate power starves the planet; and many other themes besides.

As always, the program also includes a wide range of Taste Workshops, Dinner Dates, and other gastronomic encounters that will provide visitors numerous opportunities to discover new flavors from around the world and learn how food can provide a pathway to sustainable food systems locally and globally. [1] The International Market, with its dazzling colors, enticing aromas, and inspiring stories, has always been the heart of Terra Madre Salone del Gusto. It is the meeting place for the thousands of producers and visitors who attend from around the world. As always, the market is a unique space to discover the extraordinary diversity of foods, cultures, and sustainable production methods from across the globe.

A bit of history

After four editions of Salone del Gusto, which was first held in 1996, the growing geographic spread of Slow Food and the inspiration of the Biodiversity Award inspired a revolutionary new idea: a collaboration between Slow Food, the City of Turin, and the Piedmont Region of Piedmont. Thus began Terra Madre, a global gathering of food communities. Nicknamed the “United Nations of farmers,” the first edition, held in 2004, was attended by 5,000 delegates from 130 countries and attracted worldwide media attention.

Starting in 2012, Salone del Gusto and Terra Madre were combined into a single event and, in 2016, the event’s name was changed to Terra Madre Salone del Gusto to reflect the primacy of Terra Madre. This year we celebrate the 20th anniversary of Terra Madre and the 15th edition of Salone del Gusto.

More on the Terra Madre Salone del Gusto program:

The 2024 edition of Terra Madre Salone del Gusto is made possible thanks to institutions and private entities that have already confirmed their support, among these we mention the Main Partners: Camera di Commercio di Torino, Demeter, Iren, Lavazza Group, Pastificio Di Martino, Quality Beer Academy, Reale Mutua, UniCredit. The support of the Consulta delle Fondazioni di origine bancaria del Piemonte e della Liguria, Fondazione Compagnia di SanPaolo, Fondazione CRT.

Terra Madre Salone del Gusto is presented by Slow Food, the City of Turin, and the Piedmont Region. We look forward to seeing you at Parco Dora in Turin from Thursday, September 26 – Monday, September 30. Through food, we can rediscover ourselves as part of nature. #TerraMadre2024

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