In a perfect world, there would be no poverty, hunger, or dictators.
Unfortunately, we live in an imperfect world where idiots abound and money rules and corrupts. Sometimes, donations and volunteering at the local YMCA is not enough to fill the pang in your stomach. Why not get more out of your next vacation? Stop booking that trip to Aspen NOW.
explore the world like a gastronome without shelling out the time
to study. With the crazy rise in interest in food, these trips are
changing the very nature of travel and the confines of the food world
itself. Learn the intricacies of a country's food sovereignty, and even
though you're on a vacation, you'll learn the skills needed to possibly
make a change in your own community.
First, you'll get a behind-the-scenes look at the very nature of the
industry that you never get a chance to see, and we promise you won't get
arrested for it. Visit farms; meet the farmers; see the animals; learn
how olive oil, wine, and tortillas are produced; ride a bike through
vineyards; and lend a hand on farms. A large emphasis will be placed on
the eating and drinking of local fare and understanding the local
traditions, but that goes without saying.
Who's Food First? It's a San Francisco-based think tank dedicated to ending hunger. This group is hard-core:
from rallying in D.C. to figuring out ways to better use farms in Third World countries, members are not afraid to get dirty. Most tour groups
consist of six people, but if you're interested in setting up your own
group and itinerary (think bespoke), it can do that for you too.
A taste of each trip's itinerary, below:
Basque Country: Food Sovereignty and Cooperative Production
May 21-29, 2011
• Visit the fish market in Bermeo (Bizkaia)
• Visit the town of Lekeitio
• Talk with representatives from the Mondragón Cooperative
• Urkiola National Park
• Dinner in a "txoko" (a private gastronomical club that meets to cook and experiment in the kitchen and socialize with friends)
Cuba Organic: Revolution and Evolution
May 29-June 9, 2011
• City Tour of Havana on Bicycles
• Meeting with Cuban Farmers' Union (ANAP)
• Volunteer work on organic farm
• Meeting with CDR (Committee in Defense of the Revolution)
• Visit INIFAT research institute
Bolivia: Food Sovereignty and Climate Change
Aug. 6-21, 2011
• City tour of the spectacular city of La Paz (12,500 feet above sea level) with visits to markets
• Visit the "July 16th" market in El Alto, the highest (at 13,500 feet) and one of the largest open-air markets in the world
• Walking tour through coca fields in traditional coca-growing communities
• Homestay in an Aymara farming community on the shores of Lake Titicaca and discussion of the impact of climate change on highland peasants
• Discussion with Quechua farmers in Cochabamba about struggles with production and climate change in mid-range Inter-Andean valleys
France: Food Sovereignty and Artisan Production
Sept. 15-25, 2011
• Visit organic farms and meet with farmers and artisan cheese, meat and bread makers
• Meet with leaders of the farmers' union Confédération Paysanne to discuss their struggle for food sovereignty and against GMOs
• Excursion in the rural, volcanic landscape of Auvergne
• Visit an agricultural high school and experience a French 'school lunch'
• Tour the Chateau de Chenonceau and its spectacular gardens Those were just a few of the things that could be enjoyed on the trips.
For all information on itineraries, bookings, and prices, visit the website
. It'll be the trip of a lifetime.
Follow Clean Plate Charlie on Facebook and on Twitter: @CleanPlateBPB.