‘Slow and Local Food’ Lecture by Visiting Italian Researcher

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A lecture, “Overview of Soil, Plant and Food Research at the University of Aldo Mori in Bari, Italy,� is open to the campus community on Monday, Oct. 21 from 4 to 5 p.m. in Paige Laboratories, room 202, by visiting plant and soil scientist, professor and department head Luigi Ricciardi.

It is the first stop during his three-day campus visit and will introduce a proposed new collaboration between the Stockbridge School of Agriculture and the Italian Studies department that could lead to student and faculty exchanges between the campus and the university in Apulia, Italy, says organizer Frank Mangan, extension professor in the Stockbridge School.

Italy is considered the birthplace of the “buy local/slow food� movement in 1986, when residents protested the opening of a McDonalds in Rome, Mangan points out. “We are very excited about the intersection of the science of agriculture, language and culture in this collaboration. UMass students and faculty interested in taking advantage of this initiative would be able to take classes through the Italian Studies program in preparation for their study time in Italy,� he says.

He explains, “Slow food focuses on taking pleasure in eating, of enjoying the freshest local ingredients from local food producers and preserving and celebrating local culinary traditions. Today one can see this system in practice in Italian markets, restaurants and homes.�