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Farmers, fishermen and other foodies are converging on Turin, Italy, for what the Philadelphia News reports is a “rare international summit of artisanal food producers” that is designed “to forge an international alliance to build alternatives to industrial food production.”

The summit is called Terra Madre, and is expected to attract more than 5,000 people who are part of the growing “Slow Food” movement, which has grown from a bunch of Italians protesting the opening of a McDonald’s to an influential global network that has more than 80,000 grassroots volunteer members in 104 countries.

“The Slow Food mission echoes many of the trends that resonate in today's increasingly food-conscious America: a push for high-quality local and organic foods and the farmers' markets that sell them; pride in traditional regional specialties; and concerns over biodiversity, genetically modified organisms, and suburban sprawl,” the News reports. “What Slow Food has managed to achieve, however, has been to unite those disparate but like-minded interests into a single influential network, capable of elevating the cause for local treasures to a level of international concern.”
KC's View:
There are a number of components of the Slow Food movement – some of them nutritional, some of them commercial, some of them political. We’re not sure that one has to embrace all of them in order to accept the notion that local and traditional foods ought to be incorporated into our diets, and that such a shift will affect not just our diets but our broader lifestyles.

This may not be orthodox Slow Food dogma, but we think that there is a time and a place for Fast Food and a time and a place for Slow Food. And we believe that retailers looking to create for themselves a differential advantage would do well to keep this in mind…to find ways to feed people from both angles.

Such an approach would, we think, serve to feed the soul as well as the body…which certainly would be a differentiated business model.