A new series of debates organized by Timisoara European Capital of Culture 2021 Association took place on July 11 and 18, 2016, in partnership with the volunteers over at the ZURY Association, coming from different European countries.
Approximately 20 participants talked about local and global food, trying to identify the issues and limitations existing in the context of Timisoara, as a city.
Participants to the debates were divided in two teams, local and international, exchanging opinions on the local food market. Both groups agreed on the fact that local produce can become a high-potential platform for sustaining the local community and for facilitating a horizontal integration of small producers. Yet, in spite of the benefits, niche products lose when confronted with hypermarket chains.
During the second part of the debates on the local and global food market, solutions were searched and found. The ASAT case (The Association for the Support of Rural Agriculture) was presented by Adrian Briciu. This organization promotes and tries to determine buyers to support local farmers on the long term, by building a relationship based on trust and by offering the farmer a financial security.
Yet there are many reasons to support the local food market in addition to economic ones, and the support can be implemented by means such as educating children for a better understanding of the importance of local produce. In the neighboring countries there are various positive practices that we can use as an inspiration and that we could adapt to our local situation: educational programs on farming, the creation of a local brand or central farmers’ markets, urban or peri-urban gardening, rural tourism.
The purpose of the debates is to build a community of both local and international citizens by using dialogue and the stimulation of proactivity. We are open to new topics for the next debate.