Assuring Mother Earth continuity

Catering staffs display the food during the Terra Madre-Mother Earth Day celebration at Fiji Museum. Picture: RAMA

THE Terra Madre Foundation was created to conceive, finance and organise international gatherings and other emerging products to assure the continuity of Mother Earth.

Luke Nainoka, deputy director of the Social Empowerment and Education Program, shared this statement as the organisation commemorated Mother Earth Day at the Fiji Museum in Suva on Thursday.

The foundation was officially launched by the Slow Food grass roots organisation in 2004 with the intention of supporting small-scale agricultural producers and nutritional artisans and academics to aid in the sustainability of the environment and to ensure functionality of food consumption.

“At its heart the aim was to promote local foods and traditional gastronomy and food production; put simply, this means an opposition to fast food, industrial food production and globalisation,” Mr Nainoka said.

The event hosted various NGOs and important stakeholders with speeches delivered by Mr Nainoka followed by a tasting of traditional foods and herbal medicines put on display by volunteers — providing an apt interpretation of traditional and conservational methods of harvesting.

Assistant Food and Agricultural Organization representative of the UN Joann Young was chief guest for the function.

Asaeli Naika, nutritionist and representative of the National Food and Nutrition Centre said the event’s purpose was to celebrate local foods that are clean and safe for other organisms on this planet.

“Its successful approach to counter fast food has made many communities aware of the use of pesticides and non-organic fertiliser and shift strategically toward ‘organic’ agriculture supporting the Fiji Governments Fiji-made organic initiative.”

Mr Nainoka said the SEEP program promoted slow food culture as part of their ongoing commitment to human rights and the empowerment of local indigenous communities and other ethnic groups.

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