World Food Day and Local Food: A Search for Solutions

  • Ethan Gelber
  • 17 October 2011

World FOod Day logoToday we belatedly mark World Food Day, which was celebrated yesterday, October 16, in honour of the date in 1945 when the United Nations’ Food and Agriculture Organization was established.

The theme this year was ‘Food Prices – From Crisis to Stability’ in an attempt to spotlight the need for global practices that can prevent the devastating price upswings we have seen all over the world. According to the World Bank, over the last year alone the rising cost of food has pushed nearly 70 million people into extreme poverty. It has also brought hundreds of thousands of others together in everything from peaceful rallies for food equity to sadly violent demonstrations against the deeper political, economic and societal issues that affect every part of our lives, especially nutrition and health.

After all, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights states that “Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food…” Sadly, the principles enshrined in those words fall sorely short in practice these days, especially in places where access to food and water is no longer certain and the kind of real political will needed to confront looming crises is in just as appallingly short supply.

Enter: the people and their efforts to chart a clear way forward. In keeping with The Travel Word’s focus on responsible, sustainable and local travel, we believe that popular grassroots efforts – like Slow Food and the local food movements – are on to something. They may not yet have the legs for far-reaching impact (please prove me wrong if I am!), but they espouse values that put people first, not the pursuit of political and economic power.

So, in recognition of World Food Day and the too-often understated drive to effect real systemic solutions, we would like to look back at some of the fantastic local-food contributions that have been made on The Travel Word.

SPECIAL FEATURE: Local Food: A Culinary World Tour

(which includes a mouth-watering picture gallery)

Thanks to the efforts of our local partners around the globe, we’ve assembled an extensive selection of typical local appetisers, soups and stews, main dishes, vegetarian dishes, desserts, drinks and snacks and street foods, many even with recipes, but all recommended by inside local experts.

Other Great Articles with a Special Focus on Local Food

+ All of our Inside Word articles, which include a section about local restaurants and food

+ Top Five Picks for Mouthwatering Street Food

+ Care for a Fried Tarantula with Your Guinea Pig? Some Foods Are an Acquired Taste

+ Epicureans Rejoice! A Celebration of Food and Drink Festivals from Around the World

+ Savour the Taste of Thailand with Bangkok Food Tours

+ Zabíjačka! Braving a Pig-Killing Feast in Rural Czech Republic

+ Local Food Favourites from the Newars of the Valley of Kathmandu, Nepal

+ Lifting the Lid on Salvador: Exploring Brazil’s Culinary Delights

+ Namibia: A Truly Meat-Loving Country

+ The Undiscovered Festival of Europe: Wine in Moldova

+ Discovering a New Horizon: A Taste of Belo Horizonte, Brazil

+ Photo of the Week: Easter in Lithuania


We believe that whether you are at home or abroad, you should eat local fare. That means eating what locals eat, sourced from local sources. It’s better for you. More importantly, it’s better for the people and businesses working to help make your experience of their home a remarkable one.

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Ethan Gelber

In addition to his freelance travel writing (Lonely Planet author, ex-AFAR Ambassador, Huffington Post Travel blogger and more), Ethan has agitated tirelessly for responsible/sustainable travel practices, family travel, keeping things local, and quality and relevance in publishing and destination marketing. Among many other things, Ethan is editorial director of the Family Travel Association, a co-founder of OutBounding, and tackles content projects for HomeExchange.com and RW Social, which produces the NY Trav Fest. Previously, Ethan was Chief Communications Officer of the WHL Group, for which he founded and edited The Travel Word (this now-independent blog); publications manager of the French government tourist office (Atout France) in NYC; and helped manage a Paris-based bicycle tour operator.
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agriculture, festivals & events, food & drink, health, HIFeat, opinion, poverty, whl.travel,

One Response to “World Food Day and Local Food: A Search for Solutions”

  1. Ron Mader says:

    Delicious! Many thanks for the key links to mouth-watering features. When we pay attention to local food and the local people who make the local food, the more mindful our journeys become. There are multiple stories in here! Perhaps we can get FAO to focus more attention on Foodie and Travel connections in 2012.

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