Founded in Italy in 1986 by charismatic Italian gourmand Carlo Petrini, Slow Food has grown into a phenomenally successful movement against the uniformity and compromised quality of fast food and supermarket chains. With nearly 85,000 members in 45 countries around the world, Slow Food has developed from a small, grassroots group into the most influential gastronomic movement in the world. Known as the "WWF of endangered food and wine," Slow Food not only focuses on a slower, more natural and organic lifestyle that complements nature, but also works to preserve dying culinary traditions, conserve natural biodiversity, and protect fading agricultural practices threatened in this age of mass consumerism. The book takes the reader on a gastronomic journey through the practices and traditions of the world's ethnic cuisines, from the artisanal cheeses of Italy to the oysters of Cape May and the native American turkey. It includes testimonies from Slow Food representatives—such as Alice Waters of Chez Panisse—illustrating exactly what they are doing—and what still needs to be done—to preserve them.
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Carlo Petrini is the founder and driving force of Slow Food, and was recently acclaimed as a great innovator in Time magazine's list of "European Heroes." Gigi Padovani is a journalist for La Stampa and the author of Nutella: An Italian Myth.
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