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Monday, May 7, 2012

Growing Power's Will Allen Sparks 'Good Food Revolution'

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Growing Power began in 1993 as a program that offered inner-city Milwaukee teens an opportunity to work by growing food for their community. Since then, Growing Power has received national attention for its efforts and expanded into one of the most successful urban farms in the country. Will Allen, CEO of Growing Power, started this nonprofit organization after purchasing a few acres of land just blocks from Milwaukee's largest public housing project. Almost 20 years later, this small plot has transformed into a multi-site urban farm that produces 40 tons of fresh fruits and vegetables and raises more than 100,000 fish annually. Allen's new book, The Good Food Revolution, is the story of his personal journey.

Allen's story is as inspirational as the company he founded. The son of Southern sharecroppers who migrated to the North, Allen spent time as a professional basketball player and a corporate executive before turning his attention to his own backyard. In Growing Power, he started a company that is dedicated to providing equal access to healthy, safe and affordable high-quality food. Growing Power, which got its start at the farm's main headquarters on Milwaukee's North Side, now has multiple farm sites in Wisconsin and Illinois.

Growing Power is committed to employing young people from nearby neighborhoods and has sought to prove that local food can help area youth, transform communities, create jobs and improve public health.

Allen will speak at a ticketed event at Boswell Book Co. on May 12 at 7 p.m. A $5 entry fee includes 20% off The Good Food Revolution. Ticket proceeds will benefit Growing Power.