September 22nd to 26th, Terra Madre – Salone del Gusto took place with the participation of over 600 international producers and a rich program of events and exhibition spaces, highlighting how food can be a precious opportunity for regeneration. Many of the events both before and during Terra Madre were organized together with Orti Generali, one its local partners working on urban agricultural transformation. We report on some of the highlights and how they went below.


Countdown to Terra Madre

During the days leading up to Terra Madre, various side events in the framework of the FUSILLI project took place organized by Orti Generali, with a great response of participation.

From Friday the 2nd to Sunday the 4th of September, three days of Social Passata were organized, where people were invited to produce their homemade tomato sauce. Orti Generali provided each participant with 30kg of quality tomatoes, a table, a burner, a pot with lid, cutting board and knives, ladle and skimmer, funnel for pouring and various containers. A sink for washing tomatoes was shared among participants with a very powerful electric tomato press. More than 700 kg of tomatoes were processed to produce homemade sauce.

The real goal of the initiative was to push people to return to old culinary traditions, stimulate the use of 0 km-resources, and at the same time create a moment of strong collective sense of community.

On 16 September, Orti Generali organized a circular aperitif, which attracted about 100 citizens of the Mirafiori district of Turin and beyond. The menu proposed for this moment of conviviality was created according to the principles and ethics of reuse, reduce and anti-waste, and the participants tasted it in the greenery of Orti Generali’s city farm.


Terra Madre Days

On the afternoon of Friday 23 September, three workshops were held at the Parco Dora, location of the event, with FUSILLI among its protagonists.

  • Cities that change their destiny. The examples of Taranto, Rome and Turin
    An industrial city par excellence, Turin has completely reinvented itself and has given new meaning and new content to the neighborhoods that housed the Fiat and Michelin factories, also thanks to the various activities implemented by the FUSILLI living lab. In addition to Turin, Taranto and Rome have brought their experience.
  • #EUFoodProjects in Terra Madre.
    Workshop of the FOOD2030 project family” brought together five projects funded by the EU Horizon program, including FUSILLI, which will invest 48 million euros by 2024 to innovate the food systems of 52 European cities. Cities and projects met at round tables that focused on their transformation in line with the EU Food 2030 priorities and the “Farm to Fork” strategy.
  • Living Lab for the sustainable development of cities
    Belén Blanco Espeso, Project Coordinator of FUSILLI from the Agrifood and Processes Division, Head of the Food Area, CARTIF Research Center , described in detail the FUSILLI project and the role played by the different European Living Labs.

The Municipality of Rome then met Turin with Sabrina Alfonsi, Councilor for the Environment, Agriculture and Waste Cycle of the City of Rome and Chiara Foglietta, Councilor for Ecological and Digital Transition, Innovation, Environment, Mobility and Transport of the City of Turin.

Both councilors described the FUSILLI living labs of their cities with a hint of the current city food policies and the new initiatives undertaken, such as the meetings of the new Interassessorile Department on Food policies of the City of Turin which is about to arrive at a Local “Food Council “. Egidio Dansero, professor at the University of Turin and Coordinator of the Italian Network for Local Food Policies, also spoke, giving an interesting overview of the Italian situation on “food policies”. At the end of the meeting, Mirafood, an urban Slow Food community in Mirafiori presented Ma.MI – Made in Mirafiori, the basket of typical products of the neighborhood that are sustainable, ethical and inclusive, describing its conception and development within the FUSILLI project. All participants were offered a taste of these same products at the end of the meeting.

On the evening of Sunday 25 September it was the turn of the Grand Galà by Orti Generali in collaboration with FUSILLI, where more than 160 participants tasted 20 original and local dishes cooked by gardeners with vegetables from the garden, then voted for their favorite dishes and attended the awards ceremony for the best dish and for the most productive gardens, all seasoned with dances and a charity auction. The winning dish was Borscht (a typical Ukrainian dish) prepared by gardener Ekaterina, in her vegetarian version.

The proceeds of the evening were donated to the creation of the first energy community in Mirafiori Sud, to intelligently produce and share energy on a neighborhood scale, to balance consumption and limit waste.

From the best dish to the most circular pizza, an event organized by the Locanda del Parco under the supervision of the University of Gastronomic Sciences of Pollenzo entitled “Pizza is not round, but Circular” was held on the same evening of 25 September. About 30 people from the neighborhood joined the event and tasted a pizza with cauliflower cream, champignon mushrooms, basil, mozzarella and extra virgin olive oil. The ingredients came from food surpluses collected in the various Turin urban markets.


Post -Terra Madre 

There are still two important events to be held in the next few days, again within the framework of the FUSILLI project.

One will take place in the late morning of Saturday 2nd October: The Gastronomic Walk of the Mirafiori neighbourhood, organized by Mirafiori Community Foundation.

The walk has four gastronomic stops planned to discover the history and greenery of the Mirafiori Sud district. There are over 30 participants in the event and registrations are still open.

1) The Gastronomic Walk

Here is the menu and programme of the walk:

  1. Welcome to the WOW Space
  2. Appetizers at the ENGIM San Luca
  3. A good first course at the Locanda nel Parco, orecchiette handmade by the ladies of the neighborhood with pumpkin cream and bacon;
  4. The second courses at the Orti Generali, garden salad with honey and almond vinaigrette, crostone with fagioli all’uccelletto (sort of beans), Caponata Vegetariana, Robiola with Trebbie crackers and honey from Orti Generali;
  5. The desserts at the I PASSI Mirafiori cooperative


2) Training course on aeroponic cultivation

The second event is a free training course on aeroponic cultivation, (in Italian, click to register!) which will be held in mid-October and aimed at all citizens interested in this form of cultivation which has numerous advantages, including the maximum reduction of waste.


The perfect match

FUSILLI was at the centre of TERRA MADRE with a series of diversified initiatives, only partially included in this article. All these moments had two relevant objectives in common: to foster urban food systems through innovative living labs and raise awareness among cities and citizens to conscious and sustainable consumption of food.

Author: Valeria Tarallo, City of Turin