Field kitchen 'Den Troag' is part of Federatie Kollektief Rampenplan ('Emergency Planning Collec-tive Federati-on'), a group of people expressing their dissatisfaction with the existing (power) structure of society through work and political action.
Convinced as we are that we need to build a more autonomous, self-managing community, we endeavour to live, work and fight for an environmentally benign, socially and society. We don't feel like sitting back quietly in a corner watching the earth being destroyed. Nor do we feel like working in a economic system of self-destruction. Current modes of production and greedy consumerism lead to poverty, disease and the destruction of nature. Under the motto "improve the world, and don't forget yourself in the process", we try to radically reshape our own patterns of consumption and take full responsibility for our own lifestyle and action, working on small-scale, ecologically compatible alternatives under shared responsibility rather than hierarchical power structures.
The roots of our field kitchen date back to the early 80s: a period of mass action and blockades to stop nuclear power. Out of those actions grew a mobile, vegetarian, organic kitchen, which has since provided wholesome nourishment for large groups of people at many locations throughout Europe: during demomstrations, congresses and bike and hike actions.
In our opinion you can't fight nuclear power, militarism, ecological destruction and exploitation and continue to eat meat. Meat consuption is not only responsible for much of modern disease, but also for famine, desforesta-tion and environmental destruction -which goes to illustrate that things like meat consumption, factory farming, tropical forest destruction, famine and the profiteering of multinationals can't be seen in isolation, but are all interrelated.
And so we also choose to use stainless steel cups and cutlery, enamel plates and mugs. That means washing up instead of throwing away. As Gandhi said long ago: 'a person cannot act rightly in one area of his or her life while continuing to act wrongly in another area. Life is an indivisable whole.'
We therefore cook vegetarian food, and by opting for ecological produce we support the circle of resposible producers (organic, self-management). By doing so we not only hope to contribute to the growth of an alternative infrastructure but also encourage people to consider their own pattern of consumption. Food is a basic human need and changes in eating habits can help bring about major changes, like ripples in a lake.
The decision to cook at a given event depends on the number of meals, the distance from our home town and whether we support the activity. We want to be involved with what's going on where we're cook-ing, and expect that to be a two-way process. In practical terms that means: help with chopping vegetables and washing up. So we arenít a machine: you put a goin in, a meal is comming out. Thats not the way.
Whether the whole activity of cooking is a succes therefore depends in part on the involvement of the other participants. The money we receive we use to purchase the basic food, and pay for our office and stores, our vans, new investments and so on. If there's money left over, we donate it to the 'movement': projects similary geared to making the world a better place to live in, to papers and magazines, public meetings and similar events, centres where people live and work, orga-nic/vegetarian restaurants.
We ourselves ask for no payment in return for our work. We've made a conscious choice to be jobless; we work as 'volunteers', making our own decisions as to how we want to live, and a paid job is certainly not the 'be all and end all' of our live on this planet.
Have fun anarchizing society!