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About the Center

Woman picking vegetables

I have the audacity to believe that peoples everywhere can have three meals a day for their bodies, education and culture for their minds, and dignity, equality and freedom for their spirits. 
--Martin Luther King, Jr., remarks from acceptance speech of the Nobel Peace Prize, 1964

In keeping with Martin Luther King, Jr.’s observation, now more than ever we need a diversity of perspectives, strategies, and actors to create the conditions for equity, justice, and health in our food and farming systems. This requires a shift towards a values-based and systems-approach to addressing the 1) biophysical sustainability of food production; 2) the quality of life of farmers and farming communities; 3) issues of food access and human health in rural and urban spaces; 4) and the emancipatory potential for socially just food systems. 

Center for Food Systems and Community Transformation

We work at the nexus of food, community, and society to catalyze new food system possibilities that are essential to advancing the human condition in Virginia and beyond.

Our aims include:

  • Developing dynamic co-learning partnerships across Virginia Tech and the Commonwealth for improved collaboration among a diversity of stakeholders addressing the complexity of food system issues with emphasis on social equity and community sustainability.
  • Launching community-based research initiatives that addresses historical and emergent issues related to healthy food access, farming system viability, ecological sustainability, and producer/food worker rights.
  • Supporting community-university teaching and learning opportunities by leveraging existing, and creating new, service-based curriculum in food, farming, and community transformation.