Test Design Lighthouse

Slow Food Campaign - Understanding the Oceans

What state are our seas in? What fish species are on the verge of extinction? Can we influence the market? Should we stop eating fish? Is there a future for small-scale fishers? Slow Food has been working in the field of sustainable fish for many years, raising awareness among seafood-lovers through the biennial Slow Fish fair in Genoa and developing projects to support responsible artisanal fishing communities.


Big steps have been taken in the direction of giving more visibility and tools to fishing communities, using the Slow Food communication (in particular electronic communication, networking and interpersonal communication, as well as international events) and bulding and strengthening the network (in particular in Europe and in the North and South America).


Communication Tools

Interactivity: The internet site has a growing audience. We have reached 65.000 visitors last year (41.000 the year before), of which 19% are returning visitors. The facebook group is very active and now counts 250 members, many of which also interact in other groups and lists to which they have been invited, such as Fish Locally Collective and Occupy Fisheries. Even outside of social networks, we have noticed an increase in national and transnational communication and networking.


Content: The content of the site continues to build with regular updates in every section, with the publication of interviews of new subjects as they are identified, highlighting their cultural role. The positive message is promoted, less centred on pessimistic analysis and more on virtuous solutions and the importance of the whole society to engage, on whatever level. Also, members of the network are spontaneously providing more content on different subjects.


Languages: The German version was uploaded and is now fully functioning. All new material is translated into German. The visitors of the site are quite balanced between English, Italian and French. Spanish and German are slowly catching up. The German visitors are the fastest growing segment (+400%)


Tools: Apart from interactivity tools and information sharing, a graphic kit was designed, which is available on demand by any person whishing to embrace the Slow Fish philosophy and organize small or bigger events linked to a local Slow Fish campaign. The kit was used and displayed during Terra Madre (workshop space and activities linked to fishing). Another tools that will be useful when finalized (it is well under way and was one of the main topics during Terra Madre 2012) is the Slow Fish Manifesto, because in producing it, the network is also forming and agreeing on a general common vision. We reprinted the Slow Fish leaflet for consumers and the Slow Fish leaflet for cooks.



More and more countries and Slow Food local chapters are focusing on the Fishing issues as:

  • Florianopolis, in South Brasil;
  • Canada has 4 chapters organizing their own local Slow Fish Campaign;
  • Catalunya convivia in Spain want to deepen their focus on fisheries, together with the Km0 network of restaurants;
  • Istanbul is working very hard on the Lufer campaign, with activities in schools and a 3 days festival, with a local network of cooks involved;
  • France has a new Presidium and is strengthening the network in view of Eurogusto. Each community works with local cooks or cooking schools;
  • Holland has a new Presidium and an Alliance of cooks that works with Fish;
  • A new convivium will be shortly created in Peru to work on the anchovy campaign, a campaign that was presented at Terra Madre 2012 and is well known now by all the network in Peru, as well as a network of 120 restaurants;
  • The Slow Fish network in the USA is gaining strength, collaborating with other Slow Fish participants from different countries and organising local activities, ranging from cooking showdowns in markets to canning teaching and political campaigns;
  • The network has also grown substantially in the rest of North and South America;
  • New communities have been identified in new countries, who participated to Terra Madre 2012;
  • Many others are organising small activities and asking about the campaign.



Cooperation on traceability between the Waddensea presidia in the Netherlands and Ecotrust has proceeded with positive results for both. The fishers know the national distribution of their fish, for example, and are focusing more on the areas not covered. Also, they receive good feed back from clients. Slow Food would like to expand this collaboration to other communities.


Salone Del Gusto and Terra Madre 2012

The Terra Madre event brought about 90 delegates fishermen, chefs, academics, etc. (of which 10 delegates’ and 1 speaker’s flights were covered thanks to the grant) engaged in different ways to defend sustainable and smallscale fishing who shared views and experiences intensively during the whole duration of the event. A number of different issues were addressed during the activities planned, but all aimed at highlighting the collective responsibility we have towards a common good as the oceans are. Among the main themes addressed: fishing rights, protection of the marine ecosystem, enhancement of small-scale fish products (quality, sustainability, transformation, traceability, short chain), the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy, the need for new governance tools.


The program with the main activities was as follows:

  • “The Guardians of the Oceans”, conference open to the public, held on 26/10/2012;
  • A dedicated space for delegates coming from Terra Madre fisheries communities that hosted daily different activities such as workshops, discussions, film screenings, etc.;
  • Showcase and sale of small-scale fisheries products at the booths of the Market, Slow Food Presidia and Terra Madre communities;
  • Taste Workshops.


Campaign Collaborations

During the year, Slow Food contacted many organizations linked to fisheries, especially those leading local campaigns or promoting innovative practices (Cayetano Heredia University in Peru, Future of Fish in San Francisco, Alaska Marine Conservation Council, etc...) to find ways to involve them in the Slow Fish campaign, to collaborate and to give visibility to their work. In 2012 Slow Food became member of OCEAN2012, an alliance of over 160 organizations dedicated to putting an end to overfishing in the European Union. Slow Food is one of five international member groups and joined the coalition to ensure the reform of the EU Common Fisheries Policy stops overfishing and other destructive fishing practices to deliver a fair and equitable use of healthy fish stocks.




Project partner:

Slow Food International (SF)

Secretary General, Paolo Di Croce

Piazza XX Settembre, 5

12042 Bra (CN)




Report 2014

Report 2013

Report 2012