Slow Food Presidia
The natural evolution of the Ark of Taste, the Presidia go beyond the cataloguing phase and involve the producers of endangered food products, offering technical assistance, organizing experience exchanges, promoting the products and places and identifying new local and international markets.
There are over 400 Presidia in the world, and they take on a particular significance in Africa.
African agriculture tends to be based on intensive monocultures destined for export (coffee, cacao, cotton, cashews, bananas, etc.) while the majority of everyday foods are imported from other continents. This situation is aggravated by the phenomenon of land grabbing (vast tracts of land granted to foreigners to use for intensive agriculture) and agricultural policies in Europe and the United States, which subsidize domestic farmers and allow agricultural products like grain and meat to be sold below cost on the African markets, crushing small-scale local producers.
African Presidia go in the opposite direction, giving value to local, traditional food products and restoring dignity and pride to communities and places where everything Western is often seen as the best.
To date there are 30 Presidia in Africa, for products as diverse as Moroccan Zerradoun salt, Tigray white honey in Ethiopia, Zulu sheep in South Africa and Sierra Leone's Kenema kola nuts. They represent examples of virtuous practices that can be applied to many other products.