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Uprooted & Rising aims to create a culture shift through public action, digital organizing, and creative storytelling that uplifts and centers the ideas and experiences of those who have been marginalized by corporate control and white supremacy in our food system. The movement includes students, workers, faculty, food producers, and community members that institutions of higher education are meant to serve.

Real Food Generation (the organization that encompasses both Uprooted & Rising and Real Food Challenge) is also a founding member of the Real Meals Campaign, a groundbreaking, intergenerational coalition to oppose the sweetheart deals between the cafeteria corporations on our campuses and the Big Food corporations that lock out community producers.


Our Goal

To end higher education’s support for Big Food corporations and white supremacy in the food system and direct the energy of our generation towards food sovereignty

Our Principles

Principles hold the integrity of our movement and allow us to act with autonomy and unity as we grow in numbers. They guide us in all that we do and help us foster a culture that brings our vision to life.


We believe that everyone deserves real food.

Those of us who want to grow and harvest food should have access to land and water. We should be able to produce food in ways that sustain the earth, our livelihoods, and our cultures. Those of us who work in the food system should be treated with dignity and be paid a wage that allows us to thrive. Everyone deserves real food regardless of race, class, religion, ethnicity, nationality, cultural background, immigration status, gender, sexual orientation, age, ability, or formal education.


We are uprooted and rising.

We recognize that we all have different experiences and connections to being uprooted from land, culture, and community. We make space to acknowledge each others’ struggles without reinforcing trauma. We unapologetically uplift the vision and leadership of the people who are at the margins of the margins in our food system and in our society, rising together toward our vision of food sovereignty.


We challenge the roots of the problem.

We recognize that the crisis in our food system is rooted in white supremacy, racism, anti-blackness, imperialism, colonialism, capitalism, and patriarchy. We are committed to challenging these systems of oppression through our movement work.


We focus on systems change.

Our choices are limited because Big Food corporations and the policies they influence control the way most of our food is produced, processed, and consumed. We do not shame people based on the food they eat, nor do we blame individuals whose livelihoods are tied to Big Food. We respect everyone’s individual decisions around food as we work to fundamentally transform this system, in the U.S. and around the world.


We uplift our communities’ knowledge.

Food reflects the wisdom and resilience of our communities who have survived and thrived throughout the ages, maintaining traditional foodways and innovating new practices in the face of stolen land, damaged ecosystems, and a changing climate. We believe in science and innovation that respect and uplift the knowledge of our communities.


We create a culture of learning.

We use community guidelines to support ourselves, our teams, and our movement to continually learn and grow. We lean into tension, and we consider and own up to the real impact we have on others. We understand that deepening our leadership is about giving and receiving support.


We care for ourselves and each other.

We are committed to nourishing ourselves and each other emotionally and materially. We do not replicate systems of oppression or further the violence we already face from forces in our society, including Big Food. We show up for each other in struggle, celebration, and hope.


We fill our movement with joy.

We bring our vision to life within our movement, inviting each other to do what brings us joy. We share recipes, artwork, songs, seeds, and stories. We celebrate our wins, and we celebrate each other every step of the way, nourishing and sustaining ourselves and our communities for the long haul.


We believe in the power of people.

Dominant structures and institutions, such as colleges and universities, are made up of people. When we refuse to cooperate at mass scale, administrators and decision-makers, who are often seen as the only power-holders, will have no choice but to follow us. Instead of negotiating behind closed doors, we create change by shifting public perception of the problem and directing energy towards our vision.


We take initiative.

Anyone guided by our story, strategy, principles, and structure is part of our movement. If three or more people believe that an action will serve the goals of the movement, they can take action as Uprooted & Rising. With a decentralized structure, it is on each of us to uphold these core components that define our movement, and we step into roles in order to build it together.


We are part of the greater whole.

We hold our unique role within an ecosystem of people and organizations, locally and globally, taking different approaches to transforming our food system. We see our movement in relationship to other movements for racial, economic, and social justice and show up for others, recognizing that our collective liberation is tied to one another’s.


We practice digital security.

We believe in the right to control our data and technology. Because we live in a world where corporations track and sell our data and state surveillance is a reality, we practice secure use of technology for our privacy and safety.


We do transformative student organizing.

Institutions of higher education, from their founding through today, often extract resources from communities and create false barriers between people within and outside of the campus. To transform this paradigm, we develop reciprocal relationships among the people who make up the communities in and around institutions of higher education.


We are the real food generation.

We are guided by and value the wisdom and experience of elders as we keep young people’s vision and leadership front and center. We challenge ageism in our movement and embrace learning across generations and experiences, recognizing that our collective future is at stake.