Standards & Procedures


In order to help guide First Coasters and visitors to food that is good, clean and fair, Slow Food First Coast awards the Snail of Approval to those producers, purveyors and artisans who contribute to the Quality, Authenticity and Sustainability of the food we eat and the beverages we drink in the First Coast region.


Quality is fundamental—food must taste good and be good for us. Quality includes: the freshness and wholesomeness of ingredients; the care and craft with which they are handled; the quality of life of consumers, producers and their neighbors. It is a standard of Quality based on food that is good, clean and fair.


Authenticity means that the food is true to its source. Natural products free of additives are true to themselves; local, seasonal foods are true to their time and place; heirloom varietals and heritage breeds are true to their evolutionary history; traditional foods are true to their cultural heritage. Authentic foods come from and contribute to ecological and cultural systems that are good, clean and fair.


Sustainability means that we must pay attention to the consequences of how we produce and distribute food. We must be good stewards of the environment in which we live; we must protect the biodiversity on which we depend; we must be humane to the animals we raise, fair to the people we employ, and we must insist that high quality food be available to all. Sustainability means reducing all the negative consequences of making food – it means using processes that are good, clean and fair.


Anyone may nominate food or beverage providers that serve the First Coast community and that contribute to the Quality and / or Sustainability of our food supply as outlined in the Standards document of the Snail of Approval Program. It is helpful to read the Frequently Asked Questions section. Once the Snail of Approval Directors receives a nomination, it is reviewed for appropriateness and assigned to a Snail of Approval committee member. An appointment is scheduled with the nominee for an onsite interview.

The results of that interview are presented at the following meeting of the Snail of Approval Committee. Discussion and recommendations are completed and if it is determined that the nominee does indeed contribute to the Standards listed above, they are awarded the Snail of Approval. The process from receipt of nomination and award will take 60 days or more.

A congratulatory letter and decal suitable for display is presented to the recipient along with the congratulations of the entire Slow Food First Coast Snail of Approval Program Committee.