Climate change is firmly embedded in the public discourse and has attracted a lot of global attention. What many do not sufficiently realize is that most disasters related to this phenomenon take place in developing countries, especially Africa – though Africa produces the least amount of greenhouse gases. Climate Change-related disasters affect Ugandans and Africans so severely because of their dependence on natural resources for their livelihoods and their limited capacity to cope with weather and climate variability and extremes. Swings in weather patterns hit farmers, pastoralists, and indigenous communities especially hard, increasing poverty and food insecurity.
Agroecology and conservation of biodiversity are the only viable solutions to Climate Change, which is against the growing tendency of the corporate takeover of the African Food system. Over the years, indigenous crops have evolved with many drought tolerance genes enabling them to withstand adverse weather conditions. However, increased biodiversity losses being witnessed in Uganda and other African countries have continued to worsen the situation.
Slow Food Uganda has been at the forefront in promoting an agricultural system that respects the environment, animal welfare, and human health. Through the Ark of Taste and Presidia projects, biodiversity resources at risk of disappearing are being cataloged and protected. The Earth Markets and Chefs’ Alliance are creating a direct link between food producers, consumers, and chefs while inviting them to take action towards improving the food sector, which contributes about 22% of the global greenhouse gas emissions. The Slow Food flagship project of Slow Food Gardens in Africa is playing a significant role in mitigating the impacts of Climate Change through the enhancement of agroecology, adaptive measures, and the promotion of resilient crops.
As Slow Food Uganda, we cannot sit back and watch! The simple individual act of eating local, seasonal and diversifying our diets can play a fundamental role in improving our planet.