Earth Markets are farmers’ markets that have been established according to guidelines that follow the Slow Food philosophy. These community-run markets are important social meeting points, where local producers offer healthy, quality food directly to consumers at fair prices and guarantee environmentally sustainable methods. In addition, they preserve the food culture of the local community and contribute to defending biodiversity. in 2015, the Mukono-Wakiso Earth Market was launched as the first Uganda’s Earth Market. During an initial provisional phase, the market was held in front of the Mukono district headquarters and is run directly by the local food-producing communities. Other two Earth Markets including Manafwa and Lira-Amach Earth Market have been launched in 2017 to make a total of three active Earth Markets in Uganda.
An Earth Market is created when an interested community – producers, local authorities, citizens, Slow Food convivia and other interested parties such as restaurateurs – come together to establish a new place for consumers and food producers to meet. A management committee, with representation from all these groups, is responsible for selecting the producers, promoting the market, and ensuring the guidelines are followed. They are also required to manage the logistical aspects of the market, and to ensure that the environmental impact is minimized: e.g. with waste reduction, biodegradable consumables, recycling, and energy-saving measures.
Producers must demonstrate their suitability before they are permitted to sell at Earth Markets. The focus is on small-scale farmers and artisan producers, providing them with an important opportunity in which they do not have to compete with large distribution chains. Small-scale production is also favored as it often produces high-quality results. Producers are asked to charge a fair price for their work and pledge fair treatment of their employees.
A key requirement is for vendors to attend the market themselves and to only sell products that they have produced themselves. As producers are meeting directly with customers, they must be open and willing to talk about their product and its qualities, the work involved, and how the prices are justified. Producers must come from the local region, within a radius specified for each Earth Market to suit the context.
Earth Markets usually include a wide range of fresh produce, preserves, meat and dairy products, eggs, honey, sweets, bread, oil and beverages.
All produce must meet specific quality criteria, reflecting the Slow Food principles of good, clean and fair:
Good: fresh and seasonal, healthy, tasty and able to stimulate and satisfy the senses.
Clean: environmentally sustainable cultivation and production processes, no GM crops, local.
Fair: accessible prices for consumers and fair compensation and conditions for producers.
In addition, the products help to preserve the food culture of the community hosting the market and contribute to defending local food biodiversity.
Mukono Earth market
Where In front of the Mukono district headquarters
When Friday, every two weeks
Manafwa Earth Market
Where Bubulo trading center at Manafwa District headquarters
When Wednesday, every two weeks
Lira-Amach Earth Market
Where Amach trading center
When Friday, every two weeks
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Slow Food Communities
Only by radically renewing the organization of Slow Food, only by making it more open and inclusive, and only by trying out new forms of aggregation, involvement and participation can we address the challenges that await us in the future in the best way possible and thwart those—the very few—who possess power and wealth and decide the fate of the world’s food and of humanity itself. They are giants but we are a multitude!
Declaration of Chengdu, October 2017
We are a global network of local communities who are united by the will to:
– Defend biodiversity
– Educate the wider world
– Sustain our efforts and influence the public and private sectors
…in order to achieve a food, clean and fair food system for all.
If you share our vision and want to be a part of the change, join our network by creating a Slow Food Community.
You don’t need to be an expert, we need the help of everybody to change the world!
What is a Slow Food Community?
Made up of a group of at least 10 people who share and promote the values of the international Slow Food movement (as summed up in the Declaration of Chengdu), a community is based first and foremost on the assumption that everyone has the right to good, clean and fair food and that Slow Food will not give up the fight until every last person on this planet has access to it.
A community is started with a founding declaration, in which the members’ state:
- their adhesion to the ideals of Slow Food and the principles of the Chengdu Declaration;
- the commitment and the objective that the community has set itself in order to promote the shared vision in their own local area and context;
- the activities, initiatives and projects that the community is planning to carry out to realize its objective;
- the contribution that the community will make to support the Slow Food International network’s strategic projects (Presidia, Ark of Taste, food gardens, campaigns).
Discover the Slow Food Communities in Uganda