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November 1, 2011

Food revolt tackles big questions

Recently this Briefing has reported on the explosion of interest in local food – growing, processing, selling and eating it.  The Fife Diet, one of the leading lights of this movement is now taking the issue of local food to a new level by asking some big questions about its relevance to much wider global issues. How does food relate to the hedge funds of the City traders? What part did food play in the Arab Spring?  All to be revealed at the Food Revolt

The award-winning Fife Diet project, now Europe’s largest local food movement, is today announcing an ‘international food happening’ bringing together activists, researchers and people interested in transforming the food system into one that’s sustainable and run for the benefit of people and planet.

Mike Small of Fife Diet said: 

“It’s essential to put the local food movement in its wider context, this is about making common cause with people across the world. We’re delighted to welcome such great speakers from across Europe and beyond to learn from them about their struggle and how we can learn from each other.” 

The unique gathering (Sat 12 November, Kinghorn Community Centre, Kinghorn, Fife, Scotland) brings speakers from Ecuador, Spain, Austria and all across Scotland to look at the wider implications of the local food movement in terms of famine, trade, aid and land use. How do you resist ghost acres, land grabs and hedge funds? Did the rising price of food stoke the Arab Spring? How does what we eat relate to climate justice?

Daniel Lopez, a member of the Agroecology and Food Sovereignity Area in Ecologistas en Acción, a Confederation of 300 local ecologist groups in Spain said: 

“Nowadays, when the global financial crisis throws many people out of the market system, the alternative, community-based proposals to stabilise a new economy, useful for people, are more necessary than ever. Food Sovereignty is very important, because it goes beyond employment or consumption: it proposes a different way for mankind to cover our real needs and to handle with Nature.”

Friends of the Earth Scotland’s Stan Blackley added: 

“The decisions we make about how and what we eat each day can have significant negative and positive impacts on the environment, the economy and for other people around the world. With the global population growing and consumption on the up, we will need to be ever more thoughtful about our eating habits in coming years. Scotland is well placed to feed itself sustainably and ethically, and in doing so can improve public health, reconnect people with the land, support local businesses and the Scottish economy, and help reduce the carbon and human impacts of the global food industry. The Food Revolt conference will be a great opportunity to learn more about what can be done to reclaim our food and eat, grow and trade more sustainably.” 

A film by the International Association Community Development  will explore the impact of climate change on the food indigenous peoples eat, a representative from Speise Lokal, an Austrian group who were  established after being inspired by the Fife Diet will be speaking, as well as talks from Spanish local food worker Daniel Lopez. Other contributions include workshops from representatives of Zapallo Verde, an Ecuadorian food coop and a report from a research trip between Govan and Detroit on community growing initiatives on either side of the Atlantic.

The gathering will conclude with the keynote speech by Stan Blackley of Friends of the Earth Scotland on the importance of the local food movement to the transition to a low carbon Scotland, as well as a debate chaired by the author and investigative food journalist Joanna Blythman.

The entire gathering will sit down and eat together for a special locally-sourced seasonal meal cooked by Glenrothes-chef Eadie Manson.  

Stalls and goods from Chiapas, Mexico, Malawi and Palestine will be on sale.


Limited places are left, booking essential via: