02-Planeta_manchette_175x100
Allegrini 2018
COVID-19

Massimo Montanari: we will need to find a different relationship with what we eat, based on respect

Confined at home over the past few weeks, people have discovered the importance, practicality and philosophy of food and wine
FOOD, MASSIMO MONTANARI, WINE, News
The historian Massimo Montanari

There is one aspect that has changed more than any other during these past weeks of being confined at home, which is our relationship with food. We have seen it in the long lines in front of supermarkets, as well as in a public debate that placed the central focus on the importance and value of what we eat and drink. It is not only what we are putting into our shopping carts, from a cultural and economic point of view, it is also an actual re-discovery of the value of our agricultural and food production. When this long health and economic crisis will finally be over, we will be facing and interacting with a different, changed, world, in which even the pyramid of our priorities will be distorted, and the primary good from all points of view, food, will be at the top and center of everything. Massimo Montanari, one of the finest contemporary historians as well as Professor of Medieval History and Nutrition at the University of Bologna, is convinced of this fact. Montanari summed up what our philosophical, ideal but also practical approach to wine, food and agriculture, will be, once the Covid-19 emergency is over, in one word: “respect”. “It is my impression that a sort of emotional approach is happening towards food, wine, and all the products made by man, starting from the fact that food and wine are essential elements of life. This is quite obvious”, explained Montanari, “and in times of difficulty it assumes all its emotional depth. When we see the long lines in front of supermarkets, they are also somewhat pathological forms, perhaps; however, their background is important for the desire to have food and be in the world. It is my impression that even the current practice of cooking at home, preparing food, perhaps measuring it so as not to waste it and consuming only what we need, will help to recapture an interactive relationship towards food and wine. The abundance we have been used to in the past decades has made us consider these things much less, and we have taken them for granted. Now, however, we have understood that they are the most important things in our life and we are approaching them with more empathy. I believe that from this bad experience we will emerge having a greater form of respect for what we eat and what we drink. It will be something useful as well as beautiful. Eating and drinking”, concluded the historian, “are gestures that I call a relationship between us and something”.

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