Food will be the biggest challenge of the 21st century. Will you be ready?

Mark Winne has worked for 50 years as a community food activist, writer, and trainer. From organizing breakfast programs for low-income children in Maine to developing innovative national food policies in Washington, DC, Winne has dedicated his professional life and writing to enabling people to find solutions to their own food problems as well as those that face their communities and the world.

Mark Winne's Latest Book Is Now Available

Seven Unlikely Cities that are Changing the Way we Eat

Look at any list of America’s top foodie cities and you probably won’t find Boise, Idaho or Sitka, Alaska. Yet they are the new face of the food movement. Healthy, sustainable fare is changing communities across this country, revitalizing towns that have been ravaged by disappearing industries and decades of inequity. What sparked this revolution? To find out, Mark Winne traveled to seven cities not usually considered revolutionary. He broke bread with brew masters and city council members, farmers and philanthropists, toured start-up incubators and homeless shelters.

The cities of Food Town, USA remind us that innovation is ripening all across the country, especially in the most unlikely places.


Mark Winne maintains an active speaking schedule that includes keynote speeches for annual meetings and conferences, talks and trainings for smaller gatherings, and lectures for colleges and universities. Topics include domestic hunger and food insecurity, public health, sustainable agriculture, social and food justice, food democracy and food sovereignty, the role of public policy in promoting social change, and empowering individuals and communities to take charge of their own destinies.

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Mark’s essays and opinion pieces have appeared in the Boston Globe, Washington Post, The Nation, In These Times, Sierra Magazine, Orion Magazine, Successful Farming, Yes! Magazine, and numerous organizational and professional journals. He posts regularly to the blog on this website and is a contributor to

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Mark Winne provides a variety of training and technical assistance services to organizations, governments, and communities interested in developing just, sustainable, and economically robust local, regional, and state/provincial food systems. These services include phone and email consultations; on-site trainings, workshops, seminars, and an array of printed and on-line resources. He also specializes in assisting groups that are developing and/or operating local, regional, tribal, and state/provincial food policy councils and networks.

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Mark is the author of Food Town, USA (Island Press, 2019), Stand Together or Starve Alone (Praeger Press 2018), Closing the Food Gap (Beacon Press 2008), and Food Rebels, Guerilla Gardeners, and Smart Cookin’ Mamas (Beacon Press, 2010).

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Putting 50 years of community food system experience, activism, and policy advocacy to work for North America’s communities.

With the advent of industrialism and its widespread application to our food supply – factory farms, genetic engineering, and agricultural chemicals – the struggle between human freedom and authority has reached a critical juncture. In spite of the rapid growth of an alternative food system – local and sustainable food production, farmers’ markets, the public’s rising food consciousness – we become more dependent everyday on industrial agriculture whose representatives insist that it is the only way to feed a hungry world. In the face of such assertions, we must ask if our dependence on such a system threatens to supplant individual self-reliance. Will personal freedom succumb finally and forever to the dominant voice of authority? Are we at risk of sacrificing our democratic voice to self-appointed governing elites? These are no longer speculative questions suitable only for philosophers, but real-life concerns set squarely on the plate of every eater.


Blog Archive

Mark Winne’s Blog


The Heart of Urban Ag Is Still Beating…In Kansas?

A note to my readers: Writing this post during the high light of summer felt almost out of place against the gloominess that has enveloped us over the last few weeks. Not wanting to succumb to the darkness, however, I persevered because it’s a story about people and a...

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Rise Up for CFP!

The Community Food Projects (CFP) grant program is to the U. S. Department of Agriculture what one tomato seed is to a large garden. It may not look like much in the palm of your hand, but when handled properly, it’s a mighty force for community food system change....

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The Choice is Clear

“We must cultivate our garden.” Voltaire The crack of the bat. The soft shoosh of the shovel blade sliding into the yielding earth. The satisfying humpf of a baseball smacking a leather mitt. Coming out of its winter hibernation, the wheelbarrow squeaks its way across...

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The Taste of Food Books

“Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested." Francis Bacon, 17th Century English philosopher Shelves stuffed with books are supposed to be a symbol of their owner’s intelligence, culture, and a certain savoir faire....

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Israel’s War on Palestinian Olive Farmers

I grew up under the sway of Zionist ideology.  Like a similar ideology that underpinned my 1950s and 1960s American history lessons, Zionism presented a virtuous cause framed by a tale of divine destiny that was forged in a cauldron of suffering and activated by a...

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Yuma, Arizona: The Paradox of Plenty

Arizona has a special place in my heart because it’s the only state from which I was ever banned, albeit temporarily. I had been invited to address a statewide food summit in the Spring of 2017 on the topic of food security. Having gratefully accepted the offer and...

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Stand Together or Starve Alone Now in Paperback

“We must hang together, or most assuredly we shall all hang separately.”  Ben Franklin When I wrote Stand Together or Starve Alone in 2018, I chose Ben Franklin’s famous admonition to his compatriots as my epigram because it stood for what I felt was both wrong and...

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A Bar Stool with a View

(All italicized sections are conversations held with or overheard by the author at the Shed Bar between 2018 and the present) It was just another night at The Shed’s bar. Two older women from Texas were laughing hard and belting back margaritas harder, a Black and...

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New Jersey = Tomato

Yes, I’m from New Jersey. After years of therapy, I now proudly and openly embrace the place of my birth and coming of age, both for its physical attributes as well as its hard-earned state of mind. With that acceptance, of course, comes an acknowledgement of its...

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