The Slow Food International Council  held its annual meeting in Tuscan, Chiusi, Italy on June 13. 96 representatives from 32 countries gathered to discuss Slow Food communities, which they believe is the most productive and efficient way of changing the food system.

Slow Food communities aim to include everyone on a local level to make the organization’s international network stronger. Local commitment shall not be limited to local goals, but will share the international objectives of the Slow Food movement, which are fighting food waste, overcoming inequality, protecting biodiversity, and battling climate change. The sense of community is rooted to Slow Food’s first ever community gathering in Terra Madre last 2004.

80 Slow Food communities have been established this year. The Vesuvian Shared Garden Community in Italy promotes the inclusion of children, people with disabilities, and other vulnerable members of the society. Meanwhile, the Bocachica Community in Colombia assembles fisherfolks, local producers, consumers, and cooks to raise awareness about marine resources and the preservation of the Caribbean’s ecosystems.

In Asia, the Philippines’ first indigenous community from Pasil/Kalinga protects traditional seeds and rice varieties. Its way of cultivation in high altitudes is also being preserved. The South African community, Vhembe, revolves around creating local food gardens as well as building banks for local seeds.

Slow Food pledges to work until everyone in the world experiences their core tenet, which is to have the right to good, clean, and fair food. Carlo Petrini, founder and president of Slow Food International, believes that the common good relates to food, environment, social relationships, and spirituality, which Slow Food links together. The movement is already looking forward to next year’s congress in Turin.

The Slow Food International Council gathering will end this Sunday, June 16. Updates about the proceedings of the meeting are available at www.slowfood.com