Meet the Balkans at Terra Madre Salone del Gusto

A delegation of about 200 people is set to take part in the most important international event dedicated to food culture.

Organized by Slow Food in collaboration with the Region of Piedmont and the City of Turin, the 12th edition of Terra Madre Salone del Gusto will be held from September 20 to 24, 2018, in Turin, Italy. Over 5,000 delegates from 140 countries, over 800 exhibitors, 300 Slow Food Presidia, and 500 Terra Madre food communities are taking part in the event.

The Slow Food delegation from Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Greece, Kosovo, FYR Macedonia, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, and Turkey includes family farmers, producers, academics, chefs, activists, members of the Slow Food Youth Network (SFYN), and students who will bring their knowledge and experience to the numerous activities that will be offered during this 5-day event. Food for change is the guiding theme of this 12th edition: This year the focus will be on people and the change that everyone can help to create.

The International Market, located in the Lingotto Fiere and Oval, will showcase numerous local products from the Balkan Peninsula: From Albania, the public will be able to taste and buy Përmet Gliko (Slow Food Presidium), extra virgin olive oil from Elbasan, and honey produced in the remote alpine region of Kelmend; from Bosnia and Herzegovina, Pozegaca Plum Slatko (Slow Food Presidium), Poljak beans, and an ancient corn variety from Dubica. The six Bulgarian Slow Food Presidia (East Balkan Swine, Karakachan Sheep, Kurtovo Konare Pink Tomato, Meurche, Smilyan Beans, Tcherni Vit Green Cheese) will be in the Market as well. From Greece, there will be a stand showcasing products that reflect the gastronomic tradition of Ikaria Island, a hidden pearl of the Aegean Sea, including the essential oil of Zagare and fruit jams. Five Slow Food Presidia from Macedonia will be present: Bukovo Red Peppers, Macedonian Honeybee, Stanushina Grape, and Wild Fig Slatko. Presented in collaboration with FAO, the stand for Montenegro will include a selection of products that are candidates for designations of origin, including honey, flours, ham, and extra virgin olive oil. The Romanian stand will host five producers selected by Slow Food thanks to the Farming Initiative project of the Prince of Wales’s Foundation Romania. Among their products are: the soft sheep’s milk cheese Brânză de burduf, millefiori honey, pálinka, cold-pressed seed oil produced near the city of Turda, the Bazna Pig (Slow Food Presidium), and Saxon Village Preserves (Slow Food Presidium). From Serbia, in addition to fruit jams and rakija, there will also be a stand dedicated to the Velika Plana Small Producers food community – Velika is a town in the Great Morava valley, which is very active in the promotion of its gastronomic traditions. The delegates from Turkey will bring vinegar from the Şile Earth Market, tarhana from Foça Earth Market, the ancient kavılca wheat, and wild olive-oil from the indigenous landscapes of Mahal hills.

An area of the International Market will be dedicated to the Terra Madre Kitchens, where chefs from four continents will prepare authentic dishes, using products from their home countries. In this area, the public will get an idea of the traditional flavors of Albania, Macedonia, and Croatia.

This year, the beating heart of Terra Madre Salone del Gusto will be the #foodforchange thematic areas: Slow Food has identified five major themes (Slow MeatSlow FishSeedsFood and Health, and Bees and Insects). Here is the list of events where delegates from the Balkan Peninsula will be involved within these areas:

Slow Meat:

The Taste Workshop Grass Peas From the Balkans to the South of Italy – Slow Beans (September 21 at 7:00 p.m. – Torino Lingotto Fiere), will be dedicated to grass peas, a little-used and little-known legume that, in ancient times, constituted the basis of peasant agriculture in many areas of the Balkan Peninsula and central-southern Italy. The public will hear the stories of many local communities who keep this tradition alive.

During the Taste Workshop Black is Back – Tradition Pig Breeds (September 23 at 5:30 p.m. – Torino Lingotto Fiere), ancient pig breeds will be rediscovered, such as the Bulgarian East Balkans Swine, and the Romanian Bazna Pig. Lucian Gilgor Scumpu, Bazna Pig breeder, and Radostina Doneva from the East Balkans Black Pig Breeders food community, will attend the event.


The ancient corn from Dubicza will be one of the protagonist of the Taste Workshop Bosnia’s Ancient Corn – Slow Mays (September 22 at 5:30 p.m. – Torino Lingotto Fiere). Marriott hotel’s restaurant chef Nihad Mameledija Nihad will use it to prepare traditional dishes, together with Albanian chef Altin Prenga and members of the Slow Food Chef’s Alliance in Albania.

Food and Health:

Chef Georgi Boykovski, who has just gained experience as a chef at the European Parliament restaurant in Brussels, will prepare dishes with different versions of kiselo mlyako, a Bulgarian yogurt made with milk from local breeds, during the Taste Workshop Milk Cultures of the East (September 23 at 1:00 p.m. – Torino Lingotto Fiere). The public will learn that fermented milk is a constant element in the gastronomic and cultural history of Eastern European countries.

Croatian mantala (Ark of Taste) will be one of the protagonists of the Terra Madre Forum Alternative Sweets (September 23 at 4:00 p.m. – Torino Lingotto Fiere). Produced throughout the Dubrovnik region of Croatia, this grape must cake is traditionally prepared for the Christmas holidays.

Beyond the thematic areas there will be a Terra Madre Forum about Small Producers and Big Distributors (September 23 at 1:00 p.m. – Torino Lingotto Fiere). There are an increasing number of large-scale distribution initiatives to support small-scale producers and craft products, a collaboration that the international self-service wholesaler Metro Cash and Carry is carrying out with small-scale producers in Bulgaria, to mention one example.

During the Earth Market Summit (September 23 at 3:30 p.m. – Torino Lingotto Fiere) there will be a moment of silence to pay tribute to the memory of Gül Girismen, founder of Foça Earth Market, who passed away after a long struggle with illness. The Earth Markets are a worldwide network of farmers’ markets that respect the Slow Food philosophy: Thanks to Gül’s great and constant work, Foça local market became the first Earth Market in Turkey, promoting the local foraging heritage.

The participation of delegates from the Balkans was made possible thanks to the action “ICARDA – Increased Cooperation Amongst Rural Development Actors in Central Europe” co-funded by the Central European Initiative Cooperation Fund.

Taste Workshops and Cooking Schools are paid events and can be purchased online; the Terra Madre thematic Forums are presented by delegates of the network and are open to the public as long as seats are available. Click here for the list of available events, which is constantly updated.

Dessislava Dimitrova – International Councillor for the Balkans

[email protected]

Terra Madre Salone del Gusto 2018 Press Office

Slow Food, +39 329 83 212 85 [email protected]

Twitter: @SlowFoodPress

Region of Piedmont, +39 011 432 2549 – [email protected]

City of Turin, +39 011 011 21976 – +39 342 1100131 – [email protected]

To request press accreditation, please click here.


Terra Madre Salone del Gusto is an event organized by the City of Turin, Slow Food, and the Region of Piedmont in collaboration with MIPAAF (Italy’s Ministry for Agricultural, Food and Forestry Policies). It has been made possible thanks to its many sponsors, including the Official Partners, GLEvents-Lingotto Fiere, IREN, Lavazza, Lurisia, Parmigiano Reggiano, Pastificio Di Martino and Quality Beer Academy; with the support of Compagnia di San Paolo, Fondazione CRT-Cassa di Risparmio di Torino, Associazione delle Fondazioni di Origine Bancaria del Piemonte, and Coldiretti; and with the contribution of IFAD, the European Union, and CIA (Confederazione Italiana Agricoltori).

Slow Food is a global grassroots organization that envisions a world in which all people can access and enjoy food that is good for them, good for those who grow it, and good for the planet. Slow Food involves over a million activists, chefs, experts, youth, farmers, fishers, and academics in over 160 countries.

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