Karen Wynne with Southern SAWG forwarded this email from the Grassroots Community Coordinator, Euneika Rogers-Sipp, to get your input. I'm copying her here, and I'm sure she'd appreciate any thoughts you'd like to share.
> Hello Everyone!
> The Mvskoke Food Sovereignty Initiative has invited me to speak on a panel
> during their "Food From The Homelands" Symposium on March 21st, of which I
> am very much honored! The title of the panel is “Food Sovereignty,
> Traditional Foods and the Future”. www.mvskokefood.org
> The Goal of the symposium is to present both tribal and non-tribal ideas
> and information aimed at raising awareness of and involvement in all
> aspects of our local food systems, focusing on our work with the food
> systems in the homelands of the Mvskoke peoples.
> I would love to hear from each of you, especially those of you I have not
> met yet, to learn about your farming and food systems work that addresses
> food sovereignty in terms of TRADITIONS and THE FUTURE. This will be an
> exciting representation of our combined efforts and a great chance to
> highlight the amazing things we are doing in Alabama!!!
> Thanking you in advance.
Food sovereignty "right of peoples to define their own food, agriculture, livestock and fisheries systems," in contrast to having food largely subject to international market forces.
Mvskoke Food Sovereignty Initiative (MFSI) is a grassroots, Native American led organization located in Okmulgee, Oklahoma, capitol of the Muscogee (Creek) Nation. The Mvskoke people were indigenous to what is now the Southeast United States and are an American Indian federally recognized tribe. Mvskoke food heritage and traditions goes back in time long before the Trail of Tears forced them to Oklahoma.
For centuries the Mvskoke maintained a successful agriculture based culture that sustained large populations living in towns along the rivers and creeks (so European settlers called them “Creek Indians”). These were the “mound builders” who developed a sophisticated civilization, taking care of the food, spiritual and political needs of their people. Today these cultures still exist as the Muscogee, Seminole, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Cherokee and Yuchi tribes. The respective languages are still used by many and the ceremonial dances, songs and practices are still carried on. Growing, preserving and using traditional foods plays an important role in cultural activities.
MFSI seeks to preserve the food heritage and traditions of these Indigenous peoples through hands-on classes, educational programs, intergenerational sharing and sustainable agriculture practices.