Paths of Excellence

Paths of Excellence

About Us

The Paths of Excellence

The project is based on common interests and commitments of Slow Food and the project Desarrollo Territorial con Identidad Cultural (DTR-IC) (Territorial Development with Cultural Identity), based on the enhancement of quality local food as part of a broader process of regional development with cultural identity.

The common priorities of SF and DTR-IC, such as identity, territory, biocultural diversity and sustainable development, are key issues in the current debate at an international level. It is therefore fitting to combine their activities and networks in order to affect public policies and practices in different areas (government, universities, civil society) and levels (local, national, regional, international) and to strengthen the economic, social and environmental impact of the promotion of local food heritage.

Slow Food:

Slow Food is a global, grassroots organization with supporters in 150 countries that works to improve the food system by supporting production and consumption models that value local gastronomic and agricultural traditions, improved food security and social inclusion. Over the past twenty years, Slow Food has focused on defending biodiversity in our food supply, promoting food and taste education and connecting sustainable producers to consumers through events and networks.

Slow Food builds relationships and promotes collaboration between different actors involved in food production and consumption to create positive opportunities for small-scale farmers, artisan producers, fishers and indigenous and African-descendant communities which, through their daily activities, contribute to preserving biodiversity and local food heritage.

Slow Food is committed to safeguarding and developing local food and the traditional production techniques and ancestral knowledge linked to it; to protecting biodiversity in our food supply; and to upholding regional gastronomic identities and the historic, artistic and social values that contribute to cultural heritage. The essential value of this approach is demonstrated through the creation of regional jobs in various sectors
connected to traditional gastronomy and sustainable production.


The Rural Territorial Development with Cultural Identity Project (RDT-CI) is an initiative  implemented since 2005 by Rimisp – Latin American Center for Rural Development, thanks to the support by the Ford Foundation and the collaboration of a large number of partners in Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as other regions in the world. It considers cultural diversity as a relevant asset to be endorsed and valued in development processes; it is based on a territorial approach, focusing on the most excluded actors and establishing, in the mean time, broader multilevel inter-institutional synergies; its final purpose is to contribute in the reduction of poverty, inequity and injustice.

The endorsement of diversity and the rise in its value refer to:

  1. the material and immaterial cultural heritage and its diverse expressions;
  2. the practices, traditional knowledge and innovations of rural populations, in combination with external contributions;
  3. the existing opportunities of integration between cultural, natural and agro-alimentary assets in rural territories;
  4. the establishment of a distinctive mark of rural territories to position their products and services with identity in different markets;
  5. the connection among actors, networks and public and private entrepreneurships, between rural and urban realities, with special attention to the role of the cities in-between.
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