Consider the animals. The theme of Cheese 2021 is an invitation to rethink our relationship with other species, particularly the domesticated, farmed species which now account for the majority of mammalian biomass.
For millennia we’ve shared our shelters, our journeys, our struggles, our hunger and our fears with animals. They’ve protected us, warmed us, fed us with their milk and their meat, ensuring their survival on a planet that is theirs as much as it is ours. Animals and human beings belong to the same kingdom: we are animals too, but modernity has separated us. Industrialization has transformed animal farming into an economic arrangement in which there’s no space for the idea of a true relationship with the animals. Instead we lock them up in sheds where their lives are short and full of suffering.
The time has come for a radical rethink of the social, environmental and health implications of this relationship. It’s time to ask ourselves what existence we afford the animals, and what that says about us. Only by considering their importance for our own lives, for the conservation of pastures, for the production of nutritious and healthy food, can we rediscover that sense of humanity which the industrial and post-industrial ages have eroded.
Andrea Gavinelli, European Commission, DG for Health
Simone Pollo, Professor of Moral Philosophy at La Sapienza University in Rome
Fred Provenza, Emeritus Professor of Behavioral Ecology at the Wildland Resources Department, Utah State University, USA
Piero Sardo, President of the Slow Food Foundation for Biodiversity
Moderator: Jacopo Goracci, farmer and collaborator with the Slow Food Foundation for Biodiversity
The conferences at Cheese will be held on Zoom. The names of the speakers will be published soon. Registration is required to access the live translation service.
Cover image Roman Countryside Caciofiore, Slow Food Presidium, Lazio | Ph. Alberto Peroli
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