Wayne’s Glowing Speaking Endorsements

We asked Wayne for a talk that would focus on the promise, possibilities, and potential of food and agriculture in Edmonton.  What Wayne brought was that and far more.  Wayne’s talk certainly helped everyone in the room understand what was possible, while also providing suggestions on the key ingredients for how to achieve success.  Wayne emphasized the forces of love, positivity, enthusiasm, and creativity.  An inspiring presentation on the comprehensive nature of food as a solution to the present day challenges of cities was exactly the balanced and achievable talk we needed.  As a result, our audience of impressive diversity has been given a nudge to collectively grow the resilient seeds planted by Wayne, as we continue to move forward together to build our local food system.  Wayne’s wisdom, honesty, and persistent smiling face ensure that we will look for future opportunities to work with him again.  Thanks Wayne for your short burst of hope and sunshine during our seedling stage!

Hani Quan, Planner, Edmonton, ALberta 


Wayne Roberts, is a gifted speaker with that rare capacity to weave humour
into a delivery with tons of substance. Because he taps into our joyful
side, I never feel defeated by the some of the grim news he is also forced
to report, like a terribly broken world food system. I always leave his
talks feeling motivated, eager to get to work!

Susan Walsh, executive director, Unitarian Service
Committee/Seeds of Diversity

“Wayne Roberts is the John Wayne of Food Security”

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Javan, Permaculture BC

Wayne Roberts has given presentations in my undergraduate and graduate courses, and has also spoken at community and academic events I have attended. He is equally adept at speaking to academics, policy-makers and practitioner audiences. Wayne is an engaging, authoritative speaker on cutting-edge research, policy and practice of food systems. Wayne presents complex issues in straightforward terms, and always stimulates lively and thoughtful discussion about the most pressing issues of our day.

Dr. Alison Blay-Palmer
Associate Professor, Laurier University,
President, Canadian Association for Food Studies

Wayne has always been a huge supporter of the youth-led food movement and the Toronto Youth Food Policy Council (TYFPC). He’s all about connection – connecting Youth with one another and to the larger movement. For example, at the TYFPC’s 2011 “Youth Food and Job Fair”, Wayne moderated our panel and inspired us all with his stories and insight. He’s ability to engage audiences is really a true gift.

Tracy Phillippi
M.E.S. York University
Ontario Craft Beer Consultant


Wayne is the perfect combination of Michael Moore and Noam Chomsky.

Howard Krieger, MD “patron saint of Ontario midwives”


“Wayne is the Michael Pollan of Canadian food analysis.”

Ivy Knight, freelance journalist
leading Toronto food critic



A gifted and zealous orator, Wayne Roberts has electrified audiences in Minneapolis with his tales of food systems gone awry, revitalized and resurrected. Roberts brings decades of hands-on experience in the world of food systems and innovative food policy and makes his wisdom accessible through compelling first-hand accounts, sage advice, and a welcome dose of good humor.

JoAnne Berkenkamp
Program Director, Local Foods
Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy
612 / 870-3410

I’ve worked with Wayne for over 15 years, when he’s been chair of the Coalition for a Green Economy, manager of the Toronto Food Policy Council, and, more recently, head of his own consulting company, Will Work for Food Policy. Green entrepreneurs couldn’t ask to have anyone better in their court. He’s encouraging, he’s careful, he’s connected, he knows what he doesn’t know, he knows the Big Picture of our industry and our personal dreams. He’ll keep you honest, but he’ll make sure you see the funny side of things too.

Greg Herriott
President, Oilseed Works


Wayne possesses a natural curiosity for how people come together to solve life’s challenges and demonstrates a deep and genuine concern for building truly sustainable food systems -  from the farmers that grow the food right through to the families sitting down to a meal. Wayne draws from examples from all over the world and from right in your community to create thought provoking and entertaining food presentations on what we are doing wrong, how we can start to get it right and best of all how solutions are not just doable but in many ways natural answers to many of our problems. Wayne is the type of speaker who will not just give you an hours information and entertainment but will leave you thinking for days.

Wayne rubs shoulders easily in a farm crowd and he loves to share in a laugh at himself and the occasional absurdity of our world. After hearing Wayne present folks are keen for a chance to sit down with him for a coffee or a beer and continue the conversation.

Don Mills, National Farmers Union , vice-president


I’ve heard you speak many times now, but last night was far and away your best. Not only was your message thoughtful and full of years of observation, but your delivery was excellent.

Well done and thanks for coming to our hills.

Nicola Ross, Alternatives Journal

‘Here’s another excellent summary of how cities will be the gamechangers in the future of our localized food systems by the wonderful Wayne Roberts”

Jennifer Cockrall-King, author of Food and the City

“To me it seems remarkable how some people seem to be able to navigate through the morass of negative, obstructive conventions and interventions to build up a system that becomes a real sea change in progress towards sustainable development. From your description of the work in Toronto it appears you have done just that and justifies my belief in asking Kevin to helping Bristol to steer a similar course.”

Steve Bristol, UK Sustainability Coordinator 

“I just wanted to follow up and say how pleased we were with how yesterday went.  Thank you for bringing your vision and expertise, stories and great humour to York Region!  I believe yesterday will be seen as a catalytic event in moving this work forward and that is exciting.”

Jane Wedlock, UWYR, Member of Food Charter Working Group