coffee preservers ethiopia - slow food - girl gone authentic

Earth Defenders Captured by Steve McCurry

“We wanted to portray the devotion of these people to defending their own food communities. It would be a shame to allow these unique traditions to disappear. The idea of protecting them is the inspiration behind this calendar dedicated to the Earth Defenders and to the African continent as a whole.”

Back in 2015, Lavazza together with Slow Food collaborated with iconic photographer Steve McCurry and creative director Armando Testa for the creation of the Earth Defenders calendar. For lack of the right words, we will loosely though very respectfully sum up the Earth Defenders project as a visual journey of men women who are devoted to nurturing and therefore courageously defending their land in Africa.

From Edward, the guardian of sustainable agriculture to John the pumpkin Lare whisperer. From Maye the spice and grain alchemist to the women of Kafa who are deeply  rooted in coffee. The Earth Defenders project captured Africa’s very warriors, who are at the heart of protecting food traditions for future generations.

coffee preservers ethiopia - slow food - girl gone authentic
‘Our Roots’ - Ethiopian women from the Kafa region defend and preserve the coffee which symbolises the richness of this land
Argan Oil Paladine - Slow Food - Giel Gone Authentic
‘Argan Oil Paladine’ - Nadia Fatmi, president of the Tighanimine women’s cooperative (a Slow Food Presidium), she is the guardian of the argan tree, which is similar to the olive but grows only on the southern coast of Morocco.
spice lady - slow food - girl gone authentic
‘Soul Ingredients’ - Mayé Ndour, a chef and restaurant owner in Senegal, is a champion of cereals and local product
millet and couscous - slow food -girl gone authentic
‘Women of Fadiouth’ - Anna Ndiaye (President of the Gie Mbel Saac Federation on Fadiouth Island in Senegal) fights to defend the quality of salted millet couscous
saffron and freedom - slow food - girl gone authentic
‘Saffron and Freedom’ - Mhamd Id Taleb, President of the saffron agricultural cooperative and Slow Food Presidium in Taliouine, a village in the south east of Morocco, the freedom of his lifestyle derives from the cultivation of saffron
gurading the plantations - slow food - girl gone authentic
‘The Sentinel Guarding the Plantations’ - Asnakech Thomas, a coffee grower in Ethiopia, the homeland of coffee, she is a determined and passionate guardian of the Ethiopian Arabica coffee she calls “green gold” and regards as the “backbone” of her country
camel milk - slow food - girl gone authenticcamel milk - slow food - girl gone authentic
‘The Chieftain’ - Roba Bulga Jilo, an Ethiopian food activist, he is a member of the Karrayyu tribe of nomadic herders, with whom he has established a Slow Food Presidium to safeguard camel milk, a product with a symbolic value in Ethiopia
salt producer - slow food - girl gone authentic
‘The Salt of the Presidium’ - Andrew Wanyonyi Sikanga, a salt producer in Nabuyole, western Kenya, produces salt from an aquatic plant

From 1993, Lavazza began collaborating with esteemed photographers – such as Helmut Newton, Annie Leibovitz, David LaChapelle and Ellen von Unwerth – to produce a series of calendars that quickly became sought-after collector items. And, for the first time in history, this particular calendar was on sale to support the 10,000 food gardens in Africa project.

Words by Khumoetsile Seamogano

Images from Photography Office

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