The motivation of the partners: all partners are highly motivated to contribute to the goals of the project, to facilitate the exchange of good practices in the fields of sustainable food production, preparation, consumption and dissemination, and support adult learners fro all participating countries to gain new competences within these fields.
2. Problems that the project is addressing:
New challenges and questions arising in the areas of global food production: Questions like food security in an ever growing world population – putting a growing impact on limited environmental resources – have led to research and new insights on what is healthy nutrition, combined with new agricultural techniques to preserve and heal the earth, like organic agriculture and permaculture.
a.Recent economic crisis: The recent economic crisis wakes up large groups of people realizing how dependent they are on money and on large scale food supply. New solutions for growing food are developed worldwide to create more resilient communities. Permaculture, urban agriculture, community based agriculture is booming. New insights in food and health are developed and researched to regain, maintain and recreate health.
b.Alienation from nature: The contemporary human has alienated himself from nature and this is big loss for society. Modern food is produced at the cost of air, water and soil pollution, global warming and causing more and more noise and light pollution and loss of natural and agricultural heritage landscape. All of this has led towards a lack of knowledge and empowerment around food and how it is produced and the impact on nature and health.
c.Lack of knowledge and consumer information for making healthy choices in food consumption: There is a lack of knowledge and insight between the choices people make in terms of food and the effect in terms of large scale production and disappearing resilient food systems. Allergies and other chronic diseases like cardiac diseases, cancer, diabetes, osteoporosis, and obesities are dramatically growing and are related to modern food habits and low food quality. Overeating combined with low quality food intake causes partial malnutrition leading scientifically proven to mental disorders like both depression as aggression, both growing in an fast rate in our society. According to the WHO depression will be the number two disease in 2020.
d.Social isolation and loss of community cohesion: A growing problem of modern society is social isolation and loss of community. This affects many people in cities who can only approach eating as an act of consumption, especially elderly and migrants who live in seclusion. Eating is reduced to being a consumer, and a consumer is an isolated being that has lost the full potential within the food community. The three fields of food production, preparation and eating have been separated, and this has affected the sense of community and connection to the land (Soil and soul, Alistair McIntosh http://www.alastairmcintosh.com/).