The biodiversity of our ecosystems, like climate change, is in crisis. The survival of our world is dependent on urgent action from individuals, businesses and governments. Conservationists are asking people everywhere to do their bit to protect the environment by choosing good quality food from local sustainable food producers.
Since the outbreak of Covid 19 we know people can dramatically change the way they behave when they need to; now is the time to invest in better shopping habits and make a direct contribution to the green economy by saying ‘No’ to intensive farming that uses pesticides and is devastating the countryside. One has to ask oneself in the midst of a global pandemic how much has our treatment of the natural world and our modern lifestyle made us more susceptible to viruses?
Eating a Mediterranean diet helps fight off disease
Mediterranean environmental NGOs like WWF are promoting small sustainable food producers offering an alternative to fast food consumption. The #MedFoodHeroes campaign from 15-27 June coordinated by @RootedEveryday celebrates the rich cuisine the Mediterranean has to offer and reminds us the region’s traditional fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts, seafood, olive oil, and dairy can help fight against heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and cognitive decline.
Follow #MedFoodHeroes for recipes from Mediterranean chefs and bloggers with round-ups of regional delicacies from artisan producers waiting for you to discover them on the website rootedeveryday.org/medfoodheroes
What we put on our plates can change the world
The campaign is backed by some exciting Mediterranean chefs who want see more locally produced sustainable food and less waste in kitchens whether at home or in restaurants. Like Chef Najat Kanaache, her beautiful restaurant Nur in the ancient medina of Fez has been the winner of World’s Best Moroccan Restaurant for the last three years in a row.
Najat serves local ingredients with a personal touch, sourcing produce through local farmers. “We need the planet, nature and food to survive and we need to start asking ourselves questions about where our food is coming from,’ says Najat.
Chef and YouTuber Fábio Bernardino from Portugal shares his step by step recipes using traditional Portuguese delicacies. Have you ever tried Acorn Bread? Using acorn flour from agroforestry producers Montado do Freixo do Meio, Fábio’s recipe offers a fresh twist on gluten free bread.
Eat like an environmentalist
One producer who features in the campaign is Athina Kavaleri who grows a fresh supply of organic food at her mandra to sell in a small shop on the Greek Island of Lemnos. “My dream is to be able to produce my own tahini, to professionally package my legumes and to combine it with utilising my paddock in Krinida as a tourist attraction,” says Athina.
Athina’s sesame is used in Tahini and local sweets. She ties small bundles of pods together to dry for about ten days before collecting the seeds. Why not try making Samsades, a traditional Greek dessert made of golden pastry encased around nuts and soaked in a sweet, sticky syrup. This Lemnian twist uses a deeply rich sesame and almond filling.
Cook with Us on Share A Dish Night
Join food lovers from across the globe cooking up sustainable ingredients into delicious Mediterranean meals and share your photos, cooking tips and love of good food during the parties on Share A Dish Night by joining one of our #MedFoodHeroes online events on Facebook Live on Friday 26 June and Instagram Live on Saturday 27 June 2020 @RootedEveryday.
We’ve all been missing out on sharing meals with friends and loved ones for weeks so what better way to spread the love for people and planet. By joining you’ll be showing your support for shopping and eating sustainably because the small choices we make in our day-to-day lives can have a positive impact on the environment and people.
About the campaign:
#MedFoodHeroes is part of the Rooted Everyday campaign run by a core team of environmentalists who are working with projects, eco-regions and partners from across the Mediterranean. Our mission is to reverse the loss of biodiversity which is caused when people stop cultural practices that have existed for generations. By working with Mediterranean critical eco-regions and partners we aim to show the value traditional ways of life can have in protecting our environment.
The Rooted Everyday eco-regions are in Lemnos in Greece led by the Mediterranean Institute for Nature and Anthropos (MedINA), the High Atlas mountains in Morocco led by the Global Diversity Foundation (GDF), the Shouf Biosphere Reserve in Lebanon led by the Society for the Protection of Nature Lebanon (SPNL), and the Dehesas and Montados in Spain and Portugal led by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and GOB Menorca as well as Trashumancia y Naturaleza. DiversEarth is also part of the core team looking at the culinary traditions of religious and spiritual communities. Other campaign partners working across the Mediterranean are IUCN, Yolda Initiative in Turkey. The projects and campaign are funded by the MAVA Foundation for Nature. The campaign and communications are created with Wordsby Communications.