Break the fast: Embrace the slow food movement

Image by Everfelt Media
Market goodies. Image by Everfelt Media

Here’s a food trend article I wrote for the Financial Mail last year, looking specifically at the Slow Food movement:


WE CAN see it in the growing popularity of local markets such as Neighbourgoods; in the scramble to climb on the organic bandwagon; the prevalence of pickling and jam recipes on platforms like; and in our growing interest in all things locally produced, “natural”, homemade and artisanal: slow food is a big deal in the world of food trends.

But it is also not a new trend; rather it is one that has recently reclaimed the spotlight. Slow Food International is an organisation that grew out of the Slow Movement that originated in Italy in the late 1980s – specifically in response to plans to build a fast food restaurant at a historic site in Rome.

At its core, Slow Food is an alternative model to fast food – promoting traditional preparation and cooking methods, locally grown ingredients and regional tastes with a view to preserving these and the diversity of our crops and food sources. It is a movement that is as focused on sustainability as it is on lifestyle, and today boasts over 100000 members in 1500 convivia (groups) in 150 countries, including SA.

“The original [ethos] of Slow Food is knowing where your food comes from, knowing how it is prepared and sitting down and eating it, enjoying it in a convivial atmosphere. Convivia means ‘for life’,” explains Dennis Conway, the convivium leader of Slow Food Johannesburg. “The concept of knowing where your food comes from, knowing how it is prepared, is not that far removed from that of kosher, or halal.”


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