Speakers announced for Slow Food national event
A panel of experts on local food issues will be hosted by Slow Food Mildura on Saturday 19 November as part of the inaugural Australian Terra Madre and Australian Slow Food conference. Stefano de Pieri will open the panel with his story of how Slow Food started in Mildura, and how it’s evolved.
“Stefano was instrumental in starting Slow Food in Mildura 15 years ago,” Deb Bogenhuber, Co-Leader of Slow Food Mildura, said. “We owe so much to him, not just our local convivium, but Mildura as a food destination. He really put this place on the map for celebrating our amazing local produce.”
Darren Perry, Ngintait man and former Chair of Murray Lower Darling Rivers Indigenous Nations, will open the panel, speaking to the theme of ‘Our food, our country: Good, clean, fair in our past, present and future.’ “Having Mr Perry set the scene is really important,” Ms Bogenhuber said. “We want to invite people to start thinking and talking about how our land and waters were managed before colonisation. Part of Slow Food’s global work is to protect biodiversity through the way we produce food, and our First Nations people were certainly experts in that.”
Councillor Mark Eckel, who will open the Slow Food conference on Thursday said “There is a real sense that this will be an historical occasion for Mildura as an international clean, green food destination building on our indigenous culture & Stefano’s creative mind for food.’”
The other speakers are Tammi Jonas, Chair of Fair Food Farmers United and former President of the Australian Food Sovereignty Alliance (AFSA), Dr Kirsten Abernethy from Seafood Industry Victoria, and Giovanni Barbera from the Slow Food Mildura Youth Network.
“Ms Jonas has been behind a national campaign to support small-scale farmers especially around regulations that disadvantage small-scale meat production,” Ms Bogenhuber said. “Regulations are disadvantaging the small growers, we hear it all the time. The work that AFSA is doing is so important. I hope that some of our local small-scale producers get to meet Ms Jonas and build that network so they feel more supported.”
Terra Madre will start at Jaycee Park with a market in partnership with Sunraysia Farmers Market, and move to the Lawn Tennis Club from 1 pm for the speakers panel. Attendance at the market is free with a suggested $10 donation to attend the speakers panel.
Photo opportunities with Slow Food Mildura, Stefano de Pieri and Mark Eckel on request.