Today at 7pm eager foodies and film lovers gathered in G3 in the main SOAS building to watch The Slow Food Story. This event was co-hosted by ourselves and the Cinema Cultural Corner. Through this event we not only wanted to enjoy a movie and organic popcorn, but also raise awareness about the food co-op and get the input of our community.
Slow Food Story is an Italian movie that looks at the man behind the Slow Food anti-fast-food resistance movement, Carlo Petrini. The movement is now present in more than 150 countries, spreading it’s ideas about quality food through the three words ‘good’,’clean’ and fair’ and encouraging small farmers and cooperatives. The movie engages the viewer to consider the power of food in relation to politics and vice versa, and what our responsibilities are as consumers to those active in our food supply chains.
Few people stayed afterwards to engage in the discussion, meaning they missed the input of a masters student active in the Slow Food Organisation who had come to watch the movie and share her thoughts. It was interesting to hear her input on what the movie had shown, and she spoke of how the political aspect of the movement has diminished. Her interest is largely in Slow Food as a social movement, and how it can bring together the left and right wing for one cause.
One member of the food co-op brought up the contradictions that arise from running an anti-capitalist venture in an essentially capitalist system, and the ethical and moral questions that arise when consuming in such a system. Although one cannot hope to reconcile this in a quick discussion, increasing research into what occurs in the supply chains behind our products and what is actually ‘fair trade’ is something to work on moving forward.
The representative of the Slow Food organisation mentioned that what Slow Food is all about is telling small food producers that “they are worthy in the capitalist world.” On a semi hopeful note she reminded us that whatever we are doing, at least it is something. She reminded us to follow our money, and to keep it close and that this is already a huge start.
What unites the Slow Food Story and the Food Cooperative is a deep belief that a commitment to good and honest food can change our systems and effect our politics. A big thank you to everyone who helped organise the event and who came to watch!