Do you know where the ingredients of your lunch are grown? And why is it important to know where your food comes from? On Wednesday the 26th of September Boerengroep and Otherwise discussed these questions with Klarien Klingen from ToekomstBoeren (FutureFarmers). Klarien Klingen is a freelance-farmer who has hand-on experience with community supported agriculture and we talked about how to connect consumers with producers. She gave us insight in the advantages and difficulties that one stumbles upon with CSA farming. We talked about risk-sharing in farming, how to acquire land for farming and how to value the work farmers do, for example to value the amount of work that goes into harvesting. Among the participants there were quite some students who (want to) do farming themselves that hereby got the opportunity to learn from the experiences of Klarien.
This lunch lecture was the prelude of the evening program on Friday the 28th of September, when the Food Caravan (VoedselKaravaan) came to Wageningen. The evening started with an organic dinner at the Vreemde Streken and a SP movie screening of ‘We are harvesting happiness’ by Jildou Friso. In the movie six farmers, including Klarien Klingen, told about their experiences with CSA farming.
After this, we went to the public library for a lecture by Michiel Korthals, WUR emeritus professor in Applied Philosophy. “Food skills are more important than health skills”, was the statement that he started his lecture with. He argued that eating is a social activity and organising a good meal is more than just eating healthy. What is healthy is sometimes not what makes us thrive, in the sense that vitamins and protein shakes for example may be healthy but can also alienate ourselves from our food. We should put our wellbeing first and define it broader than just healthy eating. Furthermore we discussed the influence of intensive and ecological agriculture on ecology and how monocultures also cause very limited amounts of species to survive. Eating diversely and growing diverse types of crops can also diversify the ecological system. The audience interacted with the statements of Michiel Korthals by voting and we also had diverse inputs from the attendees.
With new ideas buzzing in our minds, fueling our conversations, many of us stayed to talk after the lecture. Heroes of Taste provided drinks and snacks from local farmers, giving us tasty examples of the good food we talked about all evening. We ended the evening at Vreemde Streken with music from the new Wageningen band Saffron Soul. Overall the whole evening was a nourishment for the soul, the soul that is hungry for genuine and authentic food...