But like the food, protest to America’s burger-and-fries sweetheart came fast. Protestors rallied to cries against the “Americanization of Italy” and “the degradation Rome,” while passing out plates of pasta al dente to the crowd.

The McDonald’s at Piazza di Spagna still stands today, along with 511 other locations now throughout Italy. But the protestors won a different victory. In December 1989, Carl Petrini who headed the McDonald’s protest, signed the Slow Food Manifesto along with delegates from 15 other countries.

The Manifesto reads:

To be worthy of the name, Homo Sapiens should rid himself of speed before it reduces him to a species in danger of extinction.
A firm defense of quiet material pleasure is the only way to oppose the universal folly of Fast Life.

According to Slow Food, our defense against Fast Life begins at the table.

Since its origin in 1989, the Slow Food movement has crept its way around the globe. In the past decade especially, the United States has seen a gradual revolution in how we view and buy our food.

In 2000, there were only 2,863 farmers markets throughout the United States. That number nearly tripled in 2014, rising to 8,284 farmers markets nationwide. And today, with Costco outselling Whole Foods in organic produce, conscious food-choices are no longer exclusively reserved for the well-meaning or well-to-do.

But there is still much to be done. In the U.S. alone, 9 billion animals are raised in abominable conditions for food every year, we throw away about 40% of our food supply, and our number of farmers continue to dwindle as our production numbers overflow and our soil corrodes.

There’s a hidden food crisis, and no one knows.

To learn about it, Wefunder talked to some of the people driving the sustainable eating movement in the Bay Area. What we found were a collection of individuals with inspiring and powerful stories — all tackling the food problem in different ways.

We’ve collected their stories here and hope that you may find something, or someone, to connect with.

So please, take a seat at the table.

Chapter Two : Eat Aware

Meet Katie Cantrell, founder of the Factory Farm Awareness Coalition. She reveals the true cost behind our food...more

Chapter Four: Eat Local

Meet Tim Page of FEED Sonoma, a distribution company bringing food from Sonoma County farms to local businesses...more

Chapter Six : Eat Together

Meet Top Chef finalist Melissa King. She started Co+Lab to bring local diners, craftsmen and artisans together for one magical meal...

Chapter One: Eat Farm

Meet Adam Parks who heads Tara Firma Farms and Victorian Farmstead. Parks tells the story of  balancing sustainable food with sustainable business...more

Chapter Three : Eat Fresh

Meet Mary Lemmer, founder of the Foodscape. She reveals how eating processed foods lander her in the hospital and how she bounced back...more

Chapter Five: Eat Tech

Meet Tim Page of FEED Sonoma, a distribution company bringing food from Sonoma County farms to local businesses...more

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Have questions or comments? Feel free to email us at hello@wefunder.com