Terra Madre – Parte Seconda

Shakirah at the University of Gastronomic Sciences in Italy
Shakirah at the University of Gastronomic Sciences in Italy

In our last blog post we told you a bit about Terra Madre and Rosie Branson Gill who will be traveling to this global food event. When Rosie mentioned to us that she’ll be accompanied by fellow Slow Food San Francisco member Shakirah Simley, we thought we’d tell you her story as well.

As she explains in her charming blog post on the Bi-Rite Market site, Shakirah is quite the foodie with a passion for all things jam and a more recently acquired love of Italy. Which is quite appropriate as she’ll be returning to this marvelous country for Terra Madre.


Shakirah is the 2010-2011 Fulbright and Casten Family Foundation Scholar to Italy and a recent graduate of the University of Gastronomic Sciences (UNISG) with a Masters in Food Culture and Communications. She spent last year traveling around Italy, “learning about traditional cheese-making in a hut atop the Dolomite mountains …getting schooled by nonnas in the art of making tortelli pasta…and having thoughtful conversations about food sustainability with professors from around the world.”

When asked why she is going to Terra Madre, Shakirah shared:

“Given my background in advocacy and policy, and organizing experience in low-income and communities of color, I’m really concerned with the ‘fair’ part of the Slow Food San Francisco mantra ‘good, clean and fair.’ Given the economy, world food prices, and growing awareness around a sustainable food system, Terra Madre presents a great opportunity for delegates to connect on creating a more equitable food system for all. I’m excited to spur and be a part of those conversations.”

She is looking forward to meeting other like-minded people, hoping that Terra Madra will be an opportunity to connect with other delegates to further the discussion of food justice issues. She is also excited to be returning to Torino, visiting UNISG and catching up with friends and professors. And while she’s at it, she’ll likely take in some of her beloved Italian culinary specialties, including the “consumption of ungodly amounts of cured pork products!”

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