It is a common sense that any visitor coming to Rome – “the Eternal City”, will not only queue right up there for the city’s attractions, but also for its food specialties. Rome’s cuisine has been long known for its variety and seasonality. However, the city’s customs are endangered every day since the flux of tourists is increasing, bringing along destructive adverse impacts on the city.
What is happening exactly in Rome is that consumers, especially tourists often ask for out-of-season dishes. Also, the locals’ demand for value and convenience leads to the rise of supermarkets. All of these are contributing to the farming crisis, food crisis, global warming and a nearer consequence: the shift in local food sensibilities. Obviously, Rome’s gastronomic future is being threatened.
So as a “foreigner” visiting the city, there are certain things we can do to hamper this problem.
Do not buy things at supermarkets
Purchasing matters at supermarkets mean helping them exert their influence. Instead, you should shop at small local businesses. Go to the nearest market, and buy what you need.
Keep away from franchises and chains
collage of fast food products
Food chains and franchises are killing fresh, safe dishes. They all end up with bad products made with terrible ingredients, chemical colorings, and preservatives. You’d better go to a locally owned alimentary and have fresh dishes.
Pick restaurants that source locally
You can make some researches on restaurants that have their ingredients from the local area. In recent years, there is a growing number of restaurants serves food with locally sourced ingredients, from meat, vegetables from oils, butter.
Join the Rome Sustainable Food Project
The Rome Sustainable Food project is a joint venture between the American Academy in Rome and Alice Waters that exerts organic products to make healthy meals for the Academy’s members and visiting scholars. You should donate and have lunch at AAR.
Learn about the seasons
This is to avoid your unintentional order for out-of-season foods. Since demanding for out of season produce has significant ramifications, both for the local culture, as well as for the environment, everyone should learn about the food seasons and only order for the right season’s dishes.
These are things you should do to be a responsible tourist. They can be applied in other places you visit. So please follow and help the preservation of the country’s culture.