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Slow Food Uganda Vegetable Festival 2019 is to kick off this Friday!

Celebrating Uganda’s Diverse Vegetables

The fifth edition of Slow Food Uganda Vegetable Festival 2019 will take place on Friday 26th July 2019 at Ngogwe Sub County Headquarters in Buikwe District from 9:00am to 4:00pm.
The event is organized to celebrate the diversity of Uganda’s indigenous vegetables by providing a discussion platform to the communities on how to produce, preserve, and promote such vegetables for improved dietary diversity. The theme of the event is “Rediscovering Indigenous Vegetables for Improved Dietary Habits and Crop Diversity Conservation”
The event will attract producers from Terra Madre food communities, in Buikwe and neighboring districts, schools, universities, CSO, smallholder farmers, Youth and Women groups, Media, Leaders, and the general public.

The event will start with an opening ceremony at the presence of the Ssekiboobo, (Ssaza Kyagwe county cultural leader), leaders from Buikwe district, Productions Officer, Chairperson LC3 Ngogwe Sub County, Slow Food Uganda team and the partner organizations.
Visitors will be able to explore the traditional and indigenous vegetables at the biodiversity corner as well as through tastings, conferences, and meetings. The Vegetable Festival program includes workshops for sharing experiences on indigenous vegetables from the garden to the plate. There will be explanations of cultivation methods, harvesting methods, preservation methods, and medicinal uses of different vegetable varieties.
The event will develop in different areas:
  • Biodiversity Tent – An area displaying products from Terra Madre food communities and the Ark of Taste catalogue of traditional foods and vegetables at risk of extinction. In Uganda, the Ark of Taste already contains more than 32 products.
  • Terra Madre Kitchen – Stands with different traditional vegetable varieties and materials used in preparation and preservation
  • Slow Food Uganda Pavilion – An exhibition of the work and projects in the Slow Food Uganda network.
  • Conferences and Debate – Participants will discuss and debate about possibilities of promoting vegetable production and consumption among communities and as they give their views on other issues during random interviews conducted by the Slow Food Youth Network members.
  • Cooking Contest and Food Education – Children will be involved in a contest of cooking and preparing vegetables.
The diversity of indigenous vegetables in Uganda play an important role in many aspects. They have significantly contributed to increased dietary diversity, food security and income for the rural and urban population hence enhancing the nutrition among communities in the country. Although vegetables are a source of vitamins and minerals, they have not been mainstreamed in staple diets. Vegetables were traditionally gathered from cultivated plots near homesteads. Most of the indigenous vegetables have higher nutrient content than exotic vegetables that have progressively replaced them since ancient times. Indigenous vegetables are a big part of people’s diet and culture though they have been threatened by the newly introduced varieties. Many vegetables in Uganda are being threatened by several factors which leads to their rapid disappearance of these. The disappearance of such vegetables in different areas may be a consequence of the introduction of new agricultural techniques that treat many traditional vegetables as weeds.  The aim of the event is to showcase the value of indigenous and traditional vegetables and highlight their significant contribution to improved nutrition security and diversity conservation. Implore policy makers and duty bearers to pass laws that protect and preserve and promote the local vegetables and food biodiversity in general.
Slow Food is active in Uganda with a network of over 20,000 members organized in 10 local chapters. A network that grows, exchanges experiences and is committed to protecting the rich heritage of biodiversity that remains in Uganda.
Today Uganda counts 6 Slow Food Presidia, 41 Terra Madre food communities, 312 Slow Food gardens, 3 Earth Markets in Mukono-Wakiso, Manafwa, and Lira and about 32 products listed on the Ark of Taste – the Slow Food catalog of endangered food products to be safeguarded. Uganda has also joined the Slow Food Chefs’ Alliance, which includes 20 chefs committed to promoting local producers and keeping alive Ugandan food traditions.
Click here for more information about the event click here.
Slow Food protects biodiversity with projects around the world. To continue this work, we need everyone’s help and participation. http://donate.slowfood.com/en/
For further information, please contact:
Slow Food International Press Office: internationalpress@slowfood.it  – Twitter: @SlowFoodPress
Responsible of the event communication in Uganda: John Kiwagalo – +256 777 535 575, johnkiwagalo@slowfooduganda.org

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