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Steve James & Raj Patel will tell stories of people fixing a broken food system today so that everyone can eat tomorrow.
Generation Food
San Francisco, California
United States
8 Team Members
Generation Food Project is a sponsored project of Sheffield Doc/Fest

You've helped us go above and beyond what we had hoped! Thank you to all of our contributers - we're so glad to be building our community of folks who want to shape the future of food!

If you'd like to still contribute to the Generation Food Project, you can send a check to Kartemquin, with Generation Food in the subject line, to the following address:

Kartemquin Educational Films
1901 West Wellington Avenue
Chicago, IL 60657-4029

Jake Gyllenhaal writes....

Jake Gyllenhaal

Dear Friend,

We have a lot of concerns about climate change, hunger and Big Food, it’s easy to get discouraged. That’s why I was so inspired when I saw the trailer for Steve James’ and Raj Patel’s Generation Food Project.

The great ideas that they’re pulling together from around the world are a light in dark times. It’s their last day of crowdsourcing – why not chip in $5 and help them meet their goal?

I love that they’re finding amazing stories from around the world that speak to each other. Generation Food is more than just a film or a book, it is a community of people who want to make lasting change, here and abroad, now and for generations to come.Please join me in supporting them today.


Jake Gyllenhaal


WEEK 3 UPDATE: Watch this great video that Raj and Steve put together at Kartemquin headquarters!

The Best Kept Secret About The Way We Eat Today

Everyone knows we live with a broken food system, but often it is easier to focus on the bad news rather than the good. In fact, we are surrounded by communities that already know how to feed the world for our generation, and for generations to come.  

From Malawi to Michigan, people and organizations are building better ways to eat today so that all of us can eat well tomorrow. This knowledge demands to be shared and spread.

Our Dream

Changing the food system couldn’t be more urgent. All signs point to that conclusion, whether you consider the droughts, floods and fires caused by climate change, the rise in global food prices, or that the health effects of our current food system is predicted to shorten children’s lives. Better, SMARTER ways of growing food, and feeding the world are needed, now.

That’s why we’re developing a new documentary, book and multimedia project, called Generation Food.

We want to show how ordinary women and men around the world are overcoming obstacles and “setting the table” for themselves, their communities, and generations to come. Generation Food is our way of sharing the resilience and wisdom of these communities with you, and yours with them online, on screen, on paper and in person.

Our Dream Team

Led by documentary-making legend and award-winning director, Steve James, of Hoop Dreams and The Interrupters, and best-selling author Raj Patel, of The Value of Nothing and Stuffed and Starved, our team of fourteen researchers has worked for over a year to find some of the most inspiring stories from across the world.

From a climate-change-ready farming system in Cuba, to a way of cooking and eating that transforms women’s lives in Malawi, there are amazing experiences to share across the table, and across the world.

Stories that Matter

In the Peruvian highlands, for instance, indigenous farmers have lost a quarter of their growing season to climate change. In response, communities haven’t just invented better ways to farm the 700 native varieties of potato at 11,000 feet, but also have markets with sliding-scale prices, to make sure that no one goes hungry for lack of money.

It is through sharing surprising ideas and deep knowledge that we can build the foundation for global food stability for generations to come. We are eager to launch Generation Food’s online content platform to share peoples’ ideas for action. We want to start filming a documentary. We want to work with communities around the world, including yours. But all of this takes money. You’ve heard of fair trade food? Well, we want to practice fair trade film making, making sure everyone from our researchers to hired hands are paid properly.

Get Involved

But we can’t do it without you. We need your investment to make sure this movie gets made, fairly.

We are giving ourselves 6 weeks to achieve our fundraising goal of $50,000. The campaign will end August 17th.

Can you help us? Here’s how!

Support Us - Watch our amazing campaign video, and check out our great ‘thank you’ gifts, which include lunch with Alice Waters, exclusive music, limited edition laser discs and– for the first week of the campaign only! - postcards from Cuba.

Join Us - become part of Generation Food. Connect with us online, let us know about your story, what you are working to change, and inspire more people.

Forward Us – Help us by sharing Generation Food with your friends to help us reach as many people as possible. Post our campaign link: http://www.indiegogo.com/GenerationFoodProject, on Facebook, Twitter, or just share ideas over a dining room table. Spreading the news will help us raise awareness about our campaigns aims, catch the attention of more change-makers, and attract more money to get the project on the road. And, best of all, it'll help spark the conversations we need to address the way we eat today.

Follow Us - Keep in touch with the project and the campaign. Steve and Raj will be sending updates from Japan, Cuba, Peru and the United States. 

Thank you!


SPECIAL FIRST WEEK BONUS (now over): Anyone who pledges $50 or more in the first week will also receive the pre-release double cd from New Mexico folk/rock/roots band, Big Sad Guy

TO ALL DONORS OF "THE SUN" LEVEL: If you donated before July 14th, your postcard from Cuba is in the mail. We're not sure how fast the postal service of the revolution works - but hopefully you'll receive them soon. If you donated between July 15th and 30th, you will receive your postcard from Peru, and we have your name and address on file!



1. Where is the money going?

Here is a breakdown of where our funds will go:

  • $30,000: This is to pay the many researchers and activists who have dedicated their time and talent to us.
  • $8,000: For travel, field vists, and hiring local crew and helpers.
  • $5,000: Will begin to cover the cost of some filming equipment.
  • $4,000: So we can begin building a digital media platform to share GenFood stories with a larger audience.
  • $3,000: Goes to Indiegogo to pay for using their website.

2. How does Indiegogo work?

First, choose your donation level, and the perk you would like to receive. You may choose to remain anonymous if you like, but we'd love to know who are, and we welcome any comments. Leave us your addresses as needed. Lastly, enter your payment information into Paypal - you need not have a Paypal account to use it!

3. Is my donation tax-deductible?

Because the Kartemquin Educational Film Collective are our sponsors, all donations up to $500 made through Paypal are tax deductible. We will send out e-mails with your reciept at the end of the campaign. If you have any questions about larger donations, please contact us at hello@generationfood.com

4. Who are your researchers, and why do you have so many?

The food movement has many people in it, all of whom have deep insights into particular areas of the world. And since we're hoping to cover many different countries where English isn't spoken, it makes sense to work with activists and researchers closest to the stories we want to tell. You can get a sense of our growing team here

5. When will the book and film come out?

Our goal is summer of 2014.

6. Why is this a transmedia project?

Some stories work best in print. Others on film. Still others as web shorts. Others though exchanges between groups. We don't want to miss an opportunity to share, so we're looking to do everything from video chat to games.

7. Can I donate an amount other than the specific perk amount?

Yes! For example, if you want to give $30 but receive the perks from The Sprouts level, just click on "contribute now" then on the main campaign page, choose "The Sprouts" then scroll to the very bottom of Step 1 where it reads, "Enter your TOTAL contribution amount (which can be more than the perk minimum.)" 

8. How do I pay through Paypal without using a Paypal account? It's not working for me!

We've had a few people e-mail us with this question. Once directed to this Indiegogo help page, it has usually been resolved! Remember to 'deselect' the box that says "Save this information with a Paypal account" before you finalize your payment.
If you have a Paypal account tied to your credit card that you are trying to use, you will have to use that Paypal account.
We understand that some people prefer not to use Paypal for political reasons. The reason we use it is because of reasons to do with our non-profit status, and being able to offer tax deductibility to all donations of $500. Please don't hesitate to contact us at Meredith@generationfoodproject.com if you have any concerns or questions.

9. Your matching donation challenge was so successful! I would like to offer to be a matching donor, of $500 or more.

The generous offers of matching donors have pushed this campaign towards success! If you would like to be a matching donor please contact us before you make your donation at Meredith@generationfoodproject.com. And thank you, in advance!


More questions? Ask us in the comments, or send us an e-mail at Meredith@GenerationFoodProject.org


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raised by 534 people in 1 month
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$50,000 USD goal
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Select a Perk
  • $5USD
    The Seeds

    Watch the outtakes from Raj and Steve's upcoming trips to Peru and Malawi. We'll send you exclusive links to these videos, as well as updates about where GENERATION FOOD is at!

    81 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2012
  • $20USD
    The Sprouts

    Love the music in our appeal video? We do too. At this level, you will receive the link mentioned in "The Seeds" perk AND an exclusive digital download of the song in this campaign video, "Build," by Rupa & the April Fishes.

    109 claimed
    Estimated delivery: July 2012
  • $50USD
    The Buds

    While Raj and Steve are in Peru and Malawi, they'll use some time to make a short video reflecting on where they've been, what they've seen, and who they've met. You'll receive a private link to this film, and a personal thank-you message.

    78 claimed
  • $75USD
    The Blossoms

    All our exclusive video and audio AND we'll mail you a signed DVD set of Steve James' epic Kartemquin documentary series, The New Americans, which explores four years in the lives of a diverse group of contemporary immigrants and refugees as they start new lives in the United States. (+ $10 postage if outside the US.)

    29 out of 150 claimed
  • $100USD
    The Sun (part three)

    All our exclusive video and audio AND you will get a postcard from Raj, mailed from Malawi! Raj, Steve, and other members of the Generation Food team will be going to Malawi in September to learn about how healthy relations in the home can feed everyone. Raj will write and mail you a postcard, sharing exclusive news. (Please include full name and address.)

    15 out of 50 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2012
  • $200USD
    The Roots

    All our exclusive video and audio AND we will mail you a signed copy of your choice of one of the following fine works: Stuffed and Starved, The Value of Nothing, Hoop Dreams or The Interrupters. (+$10 postage if outside of US)

    23 claimed
    Estimated delivery: October 2012

    The Collector

    In addition to all of our digital audio and video, you'll receive an exclusive collectors' item. You will get one of just three available copies Steve James' Hoop Dreams on laser disc, which he will sign and send to you from Kartemquin headquarters in Chicago.

    3 out of 3 claimed
  • $400USD
    The Water (part two)

    All our exclusive video and audio AND a signed copy of 'The New Americans,' AND receive a personal Facebook photo post, from Steve James, while he’s in Malawi in September! Steve will be going with part of the Generation Food team to Malawi to find stories, meet people, and begin preliminary filming. Steve James will post a picture and a message to you during this trip. (You must friend request Steve James.)

    2 out of 10 claimed
    Estimated delivery: September 2012
  • $600USD
    The Documentary Fruits

    All our exclusive audio and video AND receive a Masterclass with Q&A with the award-winning documentarian, Steve James. Join an intimate 90-minute video-chat with Steve and learn how to develop your own skills! This may be bought as a gift for a friend or family member. (Scheduling TBD).

    3 out of 8 claimed
  • $600USD
    The Wordy Fruits

    All our exclusive audio and video AND receive a Masterclass with Q&A with the award-winning author, Raj Patel. Join an intimate 90-minute video-chat with Raj and learn how to write for social change! This may be bought as a gift for a friend or family member. (Scheduled for Nov 5 2012).

    3 out of 8 claimed
    Estimated delivery: November 2012
  • $4,000USD
    The Ecosystems

    Be wined and dined by Raj Patel and Steve James at Chez Panisse! This perk gets you and a friend lunch with Steve and Raj at the world famous Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California! Lunch will be included and while we can't quite stretch to your accommodation and travel, you'll ALSO receive a signed book and film from Steve and Raj when you arrive! Alice's signature bowl of fresh ripe fruit will finish off your meal. And, for the first donor only, Alice Waters will join the meal!

    2 out of 4 claimed
  • $10,000USD
    The Wisdom

    Steve James knows Chicago. Let him whisk you on a half-day car tour around the places he filmed Hoop Dreams and the Interrupters in Chicago. Sadly, travel and accommodation expenses are beyond us, but he'll spring for lunch at one of Chicago's famous soul-food restaurants. Take photos, talk with Steve, and get to know the city from a film-maker's point of view! All of our exclusive digital and audio is also included.

    0 out of 3 claimed
    Estimated delivery: October 2012
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