Rio+20, Policy+People

Slow Food is in Rio this month for the second UN Conference on Sustainable Development, Rio+20, participating in discussions and presenting our ideas for how to turn around the failings of the global food system. Slow Food Brazil is also organizing a program of side-activities that will show visitors and locals alike how communities and consumer education can foster local solutions.

Slow Food President Carlo Petrini is invited to participate in the Sustainable Development Dialogue on Food and Nutrition Security, one of ten dialogues taking place immediately prior to the Summit, taking place from June 16-19. Petrini will promote a model of sustainable development that revolves around food, through a new model for agriculture and production that respects the knowledge and traditions of local communities, people and the environment, flavors and the landscape. You can watch live streaming of the dialogue here on June 17 at 6.30 – 10.00 pm (local time).

“The 1992 UN Conference in Rio de Janeiro was a truly historical moment, finally bringing sustainable development to the attention of the whole world,” says Petrini. “Twenty years have passed, and we have not yet made enough progress to meet the challenges that had been set out. My hope is that Rio+20 will send out a strong message of unity, where we acknowledge our responsibilities as citizens of the world and where we commit ours earth and the global community as a whole.”

Representatives of the Slow Food network and Terra Madre food communities will be joining social movements from around the world at the People’s Summit, an event taking place alongside the official UN Conference from June 15-23. Expected to draw 20,000 people daily, this ‘alternative’ forum will critique proposals from Rio+20 and invite participants to share their positive experiences.

Slow Food is also presenting its ideas and projects for a sustainable future through a program of small side-events, happening across Rio in the lead up and during the main Summit. Aimed at locals and visitors alike, these grassroots activities will showcase how powerful individual and collective actions can be, and how they can inform the policy process.

A number of farmers’ markets will feature good, clean and fair producers from the Slow Food network in the region. Tours will take people to these markets and other projects across the city, and the specially produced downloadable ‘Slow Rio’ guide offers further information on discovering the local cuisine, restaurants and sustainable food projects. The guide’s 100 tips will help visitors find ‘good, clean and fair food’ and get to know some of the urban agriculture projects that are popping up around the vibrant city.

Sign the Petition!
In the lead up to the Earth Summit, Slow Food is also endorsing Nourish 9 Billion’s two regional petitions asking for better agricultural policies aligned with the principles and public policy recommendations spelled out by the World Agricultural Report, a document carefully researched and penned over four years by an international panel of 400 experts (IAASTD), and endorsed by 59 governments in 2008.

USA – the petition calls on the United States, the world’s most powerful supporter of industrial agriculture, to lead the global charge to address these issues at the UN Summit for Sustainable Development. Find out more on the Slow Food USA blog.

Europe – the petition asks for a fair and ecological reform of the European Common Agricultural Policy, coming up in 2013.

For more information (in Portuguese), visit

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