by Slow Food Bali
Slow Food Youth Network Bali Launched!
The Slow Food Youth Network (SFYN) is an international network of young people who bring about changes in the field of food production and consumption. Today, the SFYN is a global movement, and the new Bali group, launched on Dec 12, 2014, is a pioneer chapter in the whole of the ASEAN region.
Slow Food Youth Network Bali is enthusiastic and motivated to join the international network of other active young Slow Food members from all over the globe who are in support of “good, clean and fair” food. SFYNB will be creating unique and engaging events and projects focused on increasing awareness of food issues in Bali, along with providing practical means to take action. Besides encouraging cooperation among other food related groups in Bali, SFYNB will help facilitate the exchange of knowledge and ideas related to food sustainability with other young food activists from all over the world.
The Dec 12th SFYNB launching event included a half day seminar. Prof I Made Supartha Utama, Director of CREDHOC – IRCS (Center for Research and Development on Horticultural Crops, Institute for Research and Community Services, Udayana University) presented an inspiring talk on “Local Food Productivity & Potentials and How It Relates to Slow Food”. Convivium Leader of Slow Food Bali gave an informative presentation on “What is Slow Food”, and also “What is the Slow Food Youth Network”.
SFYNB was formulated with the identification of six student leaders, including Dewangga Selangga (former Student Body President) as SFYNB Chairperson, and Dayu Oceania as Assistant Chairperson. Several Udayana professors will act as Special Advisors to the new SFYNB. About 20 professors and teaching staff at Udayana have recently become members of the Slow Food Bali convivium.
After the formal presentations, a lively discussion ensued about food and food production systems in Bali today. Several attendees expressed a concern that young Balinese have a tendency to run to “fast food” outlets because it is “trendy” to do so. But the new SFYNB hopes hopes to change these patterns toward more local and healthy food for which Bali has such a long tradition.
To signal their commitment to initiate the “trend” toward “good, clean and fair” and healthy local food, the youth members organized a special tray for each participant of local traditional snacks using a variety of local flours and natural sweeteners like brown sugar and coconut. A special green drink called “kecem-cem” was served, made from kedong-dong leaves. This traditional healthy drink was popular in the past, and it is known for its high anti-oxidants, but is rarely drunk today, especially by young people. SFYNB hopes to bring back the memory of “forgotten” foods, especially foods and drinks of high nutritional value.
“To strengthen the future of our earth, we need to adjust our local food systems and our consumption habits,” said the new SFYNB Chairperson Dewangga Selangga. “Through SFYNB, we now have another way to apply our university education experiences. We hope to develop youth programs to encourage more small-scale agriculture, along with protecting the rich biodiversity of Bali.”
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