SAN FRANCISCO: A lush, under-the-stars spread of handmade bread, gourmet olives and fine wine makes an unlikely launch for a weekend dedicated to ending hunger, empowering poor nations and transforming farming as we know it.

Welcome to Slow Food Nation, epicentre of the split personality that is America’s burgeoning foodie reform movement.

The weekend festival is a gustatory effort to persuade Americans to reject fast, cheap food and embrace organic, local agriculture and a return to the kitchen.

The event saw the launch of a new strategy for the growing coalition of food reform and social justice groups that form the backbone of Slow Food.

On Thursday, they released their ‘Declaration for Healthy Food and Agriculture,’ a 12-point plan they hope can be used as a blueprint for remaking the federal farm bill, the $300 billion measure that influences virtually every aspect of the American food system. The declaration also encourages greater clarity in food labelling, and better treatment and pay for food and farm workers. — AP

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