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Wayne Roberts - Will Work for Food Policy. Toronto, ON, CA

Wayne Roberts

principal | Will Work for Food Policy

Toronto, ON, CANADA

engaging speaker; expert on food issues ; connects local food, jobs, health and environment



Wayne Roberts Publication



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Wayne Roberts on Local Foods April 28, 20 Wayne Roberts on Food - World Food Day 2009 Wayne Roberts on The No-Nonsense Guide to World Foo




I have a Ph D in economic history, but left that behind me long ago. I led the Toronto Food Policy Council, the leading city food organization in the world, for a decade (2000-2010), and serve on the board of about ten non-profits across North America, which keeps me up to speed on what's going on.

I've written eight books, including three on food. Several organizations, including the City of Toronto, NOW Magazine and Planet in Focus, have given me awards for environmental and food leadership. I have spoken widely across North America, Asia and Europe.

For details, please check out Wikipedia, Linked In or my blog.

Industry Expertise (6)

Food and Beverages

Health and Wellness

Public Policy

Writing and Editing

Food Production

Social Media

Areas of Expertise (8)

Local Food Production

Sustainable Food

Green Jobs

Food Charters

Community Organizing & Development

Food Policy Councils

Local Food Production for Urban Areas

Create A Food Strategy for Your City

Accomplishments (6)

Real Food for a Change (professional)

People want answers. They know something is wrong with their food and the system that's producing it. Friends and family are getting sick and food is losing flavour. Every day a new report links food with disease. Giving to the food bank isn't reducing hunger and locally grown food is hard to find. Real Food for a Change addresses this growing anxiety around food. It's an eater's guide to the galaxy with elegantly simple choices individuals can make in how they eat and how they shop.

The No-Nonsense Guide to World Food (professional)

Food security is a topic that is increasingly in the public's consciousness. Covering fast food, health food, institutional food, and more, this No-Nonsense Guide shows why and how “real food” has become scarce, dominated as it is in the West by agri-business and supermarkets. Wayne Roberts discusses nutrition, health, economics, and gives examples of effective food systems being developed by individuals, communities, and governments.

Steering Committee – Food Secure Canada (professional)

Food Secure Canada (FSC) is a national voice for the food security movement in Canada. It is a nonprofit organization with individual and organization members across Canada. The organization is based in three interlocking commitments to: Zero Hunger; Healthy and Safe Food; A Sustainable Food System. FSC aims to unite people and organizations working for food security nationally and globally.

Board of Directors – FoodShare Toronto (professional)

FoodShare Toronto is a non-profit community organization whose vision is Good Healthy Food for All. We operate innovative grassroots projects that promote healthy eating, teach food preparation and cultivation, develop community capacity and create non-market-based forms of food distribution. FoodShare Toronto is Canada’s largest community food security organization, recognized as an important innovator of effective programs that have been reproduced all across Canada.

Board of Directors – USC Canada - Seeds of Diversity (professional)

Our Mission is to promote vibrant family farms, strong rural communities, and healthy ecosystems around the world. With engaged Canadians and partners in Africa, Asia, and Latin America, we support programs, training, and policies that strengthen biodiversity, food sovereignty, and the rights of those at the heart of resilient food systems – women, indigenous peoples, and small-scale farmers.

Editorial Board – Alternatives Journal (professional)

Alternatives Journal, Canada’s national environmental magazine, delivers thoughtful analysis and intelligent debate on Canadian and world environmental issues, the latest news and ideas, as well as profiles of environmental leaders who are making a difference. Featuring bright, lively writing by the nation’s foremost environmental thinkers and researchers, Alternatives offers a vision of a more sustainable future as well as the tools needed to take us there.

Education (1)

University of Torornto: PhD, History 1978

I completed university entirely funded by scholarships, including the prestigious Woodrow Wilson award in 1967; after completing my PhD, I helped launch McMaster University's Labour Studies Programme. Since 1982, I have worked exclusively in non-academic organizations, but have written for major academic and professional projects in Canada, US and UK.

Event Appearances (1)


Please see my blog and attached video and audio links

Sample Talks (4)

Why food strategy is the new starting point for successful cities

builds on experiences as most experienced local food policy council leader in North America. Senior writer for city publications,The Growing Season (2001) and Cultivating Food Connections: Toward a Healthy and Sustainable Food System for Toronto (2010)

How to Bring a Food Charter or Food Policy Council to Your Community

builds on over ten years speaking to and working with food and civic leaders across North America and Britain about the practicalities and vision that lead to success in local food organizing

The Seven Habits of Highly Effective Food Organizers

builds on over 25 years experience as community and public health organizer and on deep understanding of what makes food such a positive, welcoming and empowering set of issues.

How to Find Yourself in an Exciting and Rewarding Food Career or Business

builds on my 1995 bestseller on green careers, called Get a Life! and some 15 years working with civic groups on local job creation and individuals searching for personally enriching futures linked to health, environmental and justice themes



  • Keynote
  • Author Appearance


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