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Slovenian Food Day expands to traditional dishes

Ljubljana, 19 November - Primary schools and kindergartens will serve traditional Slovenian breakfast on Slovenian Food Day, introducing a novelty this year - a story about traditional farmer dish - to further raise the youth's awareness of local food and eating habits, also to reduce the amount of food waste and climate impact.

Ljubljana
Food served on Slovenian Food Day.
Photo: Stanko Gruden/STA
File photo

The project will be held under the slogan Breakfast with Fruit, Great Day, featuring 15 government and non-governmental organisations on Friday.

As the project launched in 2011 enters its second decade, this year's sponsor, the Slovenian Cooperatives Association, decided to add traditional dishes.

The association's head Borut Florjančič told the press in Ljubljana on Tuesday that bread, butter, honey, milk and apples will be joined by a traditional main meal.

"Here we have buckwheat žganci, prežganka soup, sour milk, millet porridge with apples," he said as he stressed the role of traditional Slovenian diet.

He finds it important that public institutions should decide to buy what Slovenian farmers, cooperatives and agri companies grow or produce.

The traditional Slovenian breakfast having grown into Slovenian Food Day is according to Agriculture and Food Minister Jože Podgoršek very important for promotion of food of Slovenian origin.

"This is more than just breakfast, it's about educating future Slovenian consumers," he said, urging raising a generation which will believe local food is trustworthy.

While he is happy with a rising demand for Slovenian food and produce, he believes there is still some awareness-raising to be done.

Just like Florjančič, he pointed to the need for public institutions to buy local and organic, stressing that cooperation in this field should be enhanced.

Environment Minister Andrej Vizjak pointed to the role of reducing food waste before the start of the European Week for Waste Reduction, which starts on Saturday.

"It's worrying that we throw away a lot of food, as much as 68 kilo per capita a year, of which 40% is still edible," he said.

Since half of all food waste is generated by households, he urged changing shopping habits to buy more prudently and only as much as needed.

Food waste causes around 7% of green house gas emissions, he said, adding that small steps such as not throwing away food can help decarbonisation efforts.

Stressing that breakfast and physical activity are a good investment in health, Marija Recek from the Health Ministry said 40% of children and youth and 60% of adults in Slovenia have breakfast every day.

A total of 310,200 primary school and kindergarten children and teachers would eat traditional breakfast this year should it not be for many having breakfast at home as they quarantine or isolate due to the coronavirus.

For the third year running, traditional Slovenian breakfast will also be served to children at four schools in Cleveland, in the US, and for the first time in two schools in Parma near Cleveland.

Slovenian Beekeepers' Association chairman Boštjan Noč is happy the project the association conceived as a honey-based breakfast has developed into a movement.

He also believes it should be further developed with typical Slovenian dishes while it should also be expanded from one day to a week of Slovenian food.

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© STA, 2021