The Mansholt Letter is a project by Het Nieuwe Instituut in collaboration with Slow Food. The study can be followed at themansholtletter.hetnieuweinstituut.nl.
The 34th World Expo opened in Milan on 1 May 2015. Under the title Feeding the Planet. Energy for Life, a collective of national states, multinationals and relief agencies assembled for the occasion will present the future of global agriculture, food and energy supply to millions of expected visitors. The occasion has also prompted Het Nieuwe Instituut and Slow Food to initiate ‘The Mansholt Letter’.
The key question at the heart of Expo Milano 2015 is: how can we supply the world’s population with sufficient, healthy and safe food while respecting the planet? As early as 1972, agriculture commissioner Sicco Mansholt had put this issue on the European political agenda. In an urgent letter to the chairman of the European Union, he argued for a radical change of ecological policy, needed to provide the world’s rapidly growing population with food in a sustainable and just manner.
Mansholt never received a reply to his letter, and although many people acknowledged the dangers, permanent solutions were never found. Forty years later, the contents of that letter are more relevant than ever. That prompted Het Nieuwe Instituut and Slow Food to send the letter again, this time to innovators in the food industry all over the world in order to jointly formulate a new agenda aimed at genuinely increasing the sustainability of our food system.
Trailer by Submarine / Montage: Eddy Zoutendijk