2022 Slow Seed Summit Playlist: Regenerating Our Climate, Health, and Connection

By: Rachael Markow

“So what’s the shift to slow food?” Dr. Vandana Shiva asked at the 2022 Slow Seed Summit. “Thoughtfulness. Mindfulness,” she explained. “And through that mindfulness comes the awareness that the food I’m eating is a seed and in it is all the evolutionary past and all the evolutionary potential of the future.” Dr. Shiva’s approach to food framed the summit’s theme of Regenerating our Climate, Health, and Connection.

HRN was proud to work with Slow Food USA as a media partner at the global gathering of  community organizers, Indigenous advocates, and academics invested in nurturing the future of our planet. From May 13 to May 15, 2022, hundreds of people from around the world attended the virtual conference discussing the regeneration of our world’s foodways to advance good, clean, and fair food for all. Each day focused a new lens through which attendees listened, shared, and planned the future of our climate, health, and food justice. Listen to the opening keynote from Edie Mukiibi, Vice President of Slow Food and HRN alum, reflect with distinguished authors as they speak to key matters on the year’s theme, and hear the rest of Dr. Shiva’s powerful closing keynote in our 2022 Slow Seed Summit coverage.

Heritage Radio Network On Tour Episode 412: 2022 Slow Seed Summit: Opening Keynote: The focus for May 13 was Seed Preservation and Food Security as the summit explored the question: "Can the act of seed preservation ensure food security?" In this opening keynote, Slow Food Vice President Edie Mukiibi talks about the state of Slow Seeds globally. While living and working in Uganda, Mukiibi has focused his career on advancing ecological and organic agriculture and food systems throughout rural and urban areas in Africa. He serves as the executive director of Slow Food Uganda, has been a key stakeholder in the Slow Food Gardens in Africa program, and is an agronomist, food and agriculture educator, and social entrepreneur. Mukiibi is an advisory board member for Agro Ecology Fund and Food Tank. He was also included in the Forbes’ The Next 50 Awards: The Future of Gastronomy list.

Heritage Radio Network On Tour Episode 413: 2022 Slow Seed Summit: Challenges Related to Genetic Engineering of Seeds: In this talk, we hear from Astrid Österreicher about genetic engineering, ethical technologies surrounding genetic modification, and why the focus on this technology is different from region to region. Astrid Österreicher works for Test Biotech – Institute for Independent Impact Assessment of Biotechnology as a policy advisor on EU legislative processes. She has a background in international development with a focus on agriculture and food policies. She has both practical experience of working on mostly organic farms as well as several years of working in the political environment of the EU’s capital of Brussels. 

Heritage Radio Network On Tour Episode 414: 2022 Slow Seed Summit: Author Readings - May 14: In this talk, hear John Hausdoerffer, Dr. Devon Peña, Dr. Enrique Salmon, and Dr. Lindsey Lunsford. John Hausdoerffer is the editor of What Kind of Ancestor Do You Want to Be? and Kinship: Belonging in a World of Relations, and his books Catlin’s Lament and Wildness ​imagine how environmental health must come from and result in the healing of deep histories of social injustice and cultural trauma. Dr. Devon Peña, Co-Founder and President of The Acequia Institute, manages the foundation’s 181-acre ‘almunyah’ in the bottomlands of Viejo San Acacio, CO, and is the author of Mexican-Origin Foods, Foodways, and Social Movements: Decolonial Perspectives. Dr. Enrique Salmon is the author of Eating The Landscape, a book focused on small-scale Native farmers of the Greater Southwest and their role in maintaining biocultural diversity. He has also recently published Iwígara: The Kinship of Plants and People, an ethnobotany of 80 plants important to American Indians. Dr. Lindsey Lunsford is a scholar-activist and agriculture advocate. Dr. Lunsford’s doctoral research focused on the restorying of African American food systems and foodways for the pursuit of cultural justice and food sovereignty. 

Heritage Radio Network On Tour Episode 415: 2022 Slow Seed Summit: Closing Keynote - Vandana Shiva: Dr. Vandana Shiva delivered the final keynote, discussing women, seeds, and community. Dr. Shiva is a scholar, author, scientist, and food sovereignty activist. She is the founder of Navdanya, an earth, women, and farmer-centric led movement working to protect biological and cultural diversity. Additionally, Dr. Shiva is the founder and director of the Research Foundation for Science, Technology, and Natural Resource Policy. She has received countless awards for her activism to protect our foodways, including the Right Livelihood Award, the Order of the Golden Ark, Global 500 Award of the UN, the Earth Day International Award, the Lennon Ono Grant for Peace, and the Sydney Peace Prize. 

Heritage Radio Network On Tour Episode 416: 2022 Slow Seed Summit: Seed Rematriation - Bringing Seeds Home: Returning seeds to their communities of origin is important for maintaining biodiversity, ownership, and security. In this talk, hear from Dr. Rebecca Webster, Shelley Buffalo, Kirsten Kirby-Shoote, and Rosebud Bear Schneider. Dr. Rebecca Webster is an enrolled citizen of the Oneida Nation and a founding member of Ohe∙láku (among the cornstalks), a co-op of 10 Oneida families that grow 6 acres of traditional, heirloom corn together. She and her husband also own a 10-acre farmstead where they primarily grow Haudenosaunee varieties of corn, beans, and squash. They started a YouTube channel called Ukwakhwa (Our Foods), and their family formed a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, Ukwakhwa Inc. Shelley Buffalo is an enrolled member of the Meskwaki Tribe, also known as the Sac & Fox of the Mississippi in Iowa. Shelley served her community as Meskwaki Food Sovereignty Coordinator and now offers consultancy for food sovereignty and local foods initiatives. She is an advocate for Indigenous foodways, food justice, and rematriation. The Meskwaki are unique in that their land-based community is a settlement, not a reservation.

Heritage Radio Network On Tour Episode 417: 2022 Slow Seed Summit: Author Readings - May 15: This episode puts a special focus on women, seeds, and community. You'll hear from John Hausdoerffer, Kaylena Bray, Heather Swan, Anjanette Wilson, and Katherine Kassouf Cummings. Kaylena Bray (Haudenosaunee/Seneca) is Turtle Clan from the Seneca Nation of Indians whose work throughout the Americas has served to educate and strengthen vital links between Indigenous food systems, local economies, and climate change adaptation. Heather Swan is the author of the poetry collection, A Kinship with Ash from Terrapin Books, Parallel Press’s chapbook The Edge of Damage, and the creative nonfiction book Where Honeybees Thrive: Stories from the Field from Penn State Press, which won the Sigurd F. Olson Nature Writing Award. Anjanette Wilson (she/hers) is a first-generation college student and first-generation Filipino American who found community in seed saving through traditional Filipino practices and currently serves as the Development Coordinator at Global Seed Savers where she works to aid the dismantling of systems of oppression by preserving the Filipino Culture through seed saving. Katherine Kassouf Cummings is a Lebanese-American writer and editor born to and living on the ancestral homelands of the people of the Council of Three Fires (Ojibwe, Potawatomi, and Odawa) as well as the Menominee, Miami, and Ho-Chunk nations. She co-edited the book What Kind of Ancestor Do You Want to Be? from the University of Chicago Press and serves as Managing Editor at the Center for Humans and Nature, where she leads the Questions for a Resilient Future and the Editorial Fellows program.

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