Food Times Blog

EDITORIAL. Milan Expo 2015 and the crucial role of consumActors

editorial-milan-expo-2015-and-the-crucial-role-of-consumactors

Between disbelief and uncertainty, construction sites and delays, Expo Milano has finally kicked off. The theme ‘Feeding the Planet, Energy for Life’ cannot be addressed as it deserves, for the simple lack of political will.

The eradication of hunger and extreme poverty was in fact the first of the commitments made fifteen years ago by the 189 signatory countries of the cd ‘Millennium Development Goals’ and no one – apart from the Republic of China – has complied.

It is quite worth to highlight how the chains of production and distribution, and politics, can instead change thanks to us consumActors. In the direction of fairness, social justice and environmental protection. In two words, sustainable development. c8bfa939-9c2d-4b25-acc7-ceaee40434a8

 

How? The power of choice

The consumer is the independent variable of the market, chased after by  marketing with many different enticements. But the consumer 2.0 now has several sources of information, to understand what is behind each brand and choose products because of their intrinsic value. A value that does not always coincide with the massive investment in advertising, but rather with the true ethics of the industry.

Authentic productions, which in our households means the real Made in Italy, the one that stands for Labor Value and the value of Italian productive districts, contributing to our economy and employment, GDP and the SFW (Sustainable and Fair Wellness). Productions respectful of the workers’ rights and the dignity of local communities wherever located, the environment and biodiversity as well as animal welfare.

 

Protests

The consumActor may also have effects on the decisions of economic agents (and not only) thanks to petitions, increasingly more effective through the web and social networks, which allow us to know them, to join them and to promote them quickly. Petitions can be activated to ‘ethicize’ supply chains, to fight against the robbery of lands (called land grabbing) and deforestation. Against child labor and slavery, which occur in developing countries – from sub-Saharan Africa to Southeast Asia – but also in Italy, where the illegal hiring is still the rule in the harvesting of fruit and vegetables in some regions.

Against the neo-colonialism of GMO seeds, the cloning of farm animals, the use of carcinogenic pesticides such as glyphosate, which poison the soil and ground water from all over the planet. But also to promote fair pay for workers and acknowledgement of their union rights, the dignity of the living conditions in local communities, the environment and biodiversity. 27104c95-164f-493f-b6cb-0fd6b2870c55

 

Our petitions

A couple of examples, our call to ban the use of palm oil in food production has collected almost 120 thousand signatures in a few months, and we are at 30 thousand with the petition to ensure the information on labels of the food production site, the only legal guarantee to distinguish the true ‘Made in Italy’ from the imitations that are also found on our shelves.

ConsumActors, together, we can!

(Dario Dongo)