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The Slow Food Movement Looks to Africa



For VOA Learning English, this is the Agriculture Report.

The Slow Food movement is growing in most of the western world. The movement supports small, local farms. It works against huge farms led by international food and agriculture companies. But the Slow Food movement is not growing very quickly in Africa. So a group called Slow Food International has named a Ugandan man to help it grow.

Edie Mukiibi will work to help people in Africa grow healthy food. Slow Food International plans to create 10,000 gardens throughout Africa. Many of the gardens will be in schools. Mr. Mukiibi says he hopes they will teach young people about the importance of slow food. There is still knowledge about traditional crops and planting seasons in Africa. He hopes the garden project will reconnect young people to the land.

Mr. Mukiibi was a student of the crop planting science called agronomy. He discovered that crops being planted in Uganda were sometimes not right for the farming environment. He says he began to understand the importance local foods had to food security, but local foods were quickly disappearing. These traditional products, he says, are used to African conditions including poor weather.

Mr. Mukiibi is trying to persuade political leaders and scientists to support the slow food movement. But he says it is hard. They support big industrial farms that can produce a lot of a single crop. But Mr. Mukiibi argues that the problem in Africa is not a lack of food. It is that the food is not reaching enough people. He says people should be working to improve ways of sharing food resources.

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