A 'potluck' meal is traditionally one where everybody brings along whatever dish they feel like and then all the dishes are shared. So you don't quite know what you might end up eating, but you get the fun of sharing a variety of yummy home-made food.
A bunch of foodies with a difference has expanded the 'potluck' concept to embrace an entire community and beyond.
On Sunday the 2nd of December, Orleigh Park at West End will be filled with happy folks enjoying the 'Biggest, Freshest Potluck Picnic' from 3-6pm. Everybody's welcome, and everybody's encouraged to bring along a plate of local, fresh and healthy food to share.
The Potluck Picnic is the brainchild of the Australian Food Sovereignty Alliance. If you're thinking that the group sounds pretty serious, you're half right -- the Alliance has formed to tackle a serious issue. But they also want to celebrate the joy of food -- hence the picnic idea.
The Alliance was formed in response to the federal government's National Food Plan Green Paper, which was released in July this year. The national food plan is all about what policies the government needs to adopt to protect Australia's food supply for the future. Good idea, right? Yes, except that some people feel that the government's draft plan is heavily biased towards corporate, large-scale food manufacturers and retailers.
This is where the Alliance comes in. It's a grass-roots organisation representing eaters, farmers, community organisations, smaller food businesses, academics, and advocacy groups who want to make sure that our national food plan focuses as much on equity, environmental sustainability, and resilience as it does on mass production and big business.
The Alliance has been consulting with people and groups across Australia to develop its own People's Food Plan, which will be promoted during next year's federal election campaign. The plan focuses on how we can create fair and sustainable food systems in Australia, ones that allow people to 'choose, create and manage their food supply from paddock to plate'.
The Potluck Picnic marks the Queensland launch of the plan. It's a chance to find out more, give your feedback, and meet other people who are into good food, slow food, local food, healthy food, homegrown food, yummy food, and the like.
There'll also be a chance to chat with what are described as 'local foodie celebs', and to talk about what the Alliance plans to do next.
The Alliance already has many members across Australia, including high-profile supporters like the much-loved presenter of SBS's Garden Odyssey, Costa Georgiadis.
But, like any grass-roots organisation, its greatest power comes from bringing together ordinary people at the local level. The Potluck Picnic gives everybody an easy way to get involved -- as well as the bonus of eating some good food and having some fun.