Rediscovering Grains

Farmers, bakers, and eaters together can fuel a more diverse, flavorful whole grain supply chain.


Stephen Jones

Director of the The Bread Lab

Stephen Jones is a wheat breeder and the Director of the The WSU Bread Lab in Skagit Valley Washington. Stephen has a PhD in Genetics from the University of California at Davis and teaches graduate courses in advanced classical genetics and in the history and ethics of genetics. His first wheat crop was on five acres at Chico State University’s student farm in 1977. Together with his graduate students and staff he breeds non-commodity wheat and other grains for local uses to be grown on small diverse farms in the coastal West (from Alaska to Los Angeles), the upper Northeast and other non-wheat regions of the country. The Bread Lab is a combination think tank and baking laboratory where scientists, community members, bakers, chefs, farmers, maltsters, brewers, distillers and millers experiment with improved flavor, nutrition and functionality of regional and obscure wheats, barley, buckwheat and other small grains and beans.



Mai Nguyen 

Farmer at Sonoma Grain Collaborative and

Director at California Grain Campaign

Mai centers people in food and economic systems. Nguyen uses regenerative farming and fair labor practices to grow heritage grains and Southeast Asian crops for food and seed in Sonoma and San Diego counties. They co-founded the California Grain Campaign in 2016 to popularize and normalize California-grown, whole grains. As the National Young Farmers Coalition's first California Organizer, Nguyen mobilizes farmers to create policy change for a farming future. Nguyen also develops worker cooperative farms and serves on the board of the US Federation of Worker Cooperatives. They were chosen as a 2018 Grist 50 Fixers and 2018 BALLE Fellow for their work on passing the 2017 Farmer Equity Act, founding the Asian American Farmers Alliance, and building democratically-owned economies. Prior to farming, Nguyen was a climate researcher at UC Berkeley and in Alaska, refugee camp water sanitation specialist in Thailand, catalyst for the EBT Market Match program, and co-founder of a farm-to-table cooperative restaurant in Toronto. Nguyen completed their undergraduate degree at UC Berkeley and graduate degree at the University of Toronto. 



Chad Robertson 


Chad Robertson is the co-owner of Tartine. Growing up in West Texas, he knew he wanted to explore the world beyond his hometown, and cooking seemed like a ticket to finding work almost anywhere. Robertson enrolled at the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) in Hyde Park, New York, graduating with a dual degree in Culinary and Pastry Arts. During his tenure at CIA he met classmate Elisabeth Prueitt, and she would soon become his life and business partner. Robertson and Prueitt returned to the States in 1995 and settled in California. In 2002, they opened Tartine Bakery, and the bakery became a San Francisco institution almost overnight. Robertson and Prueitt followed its success with the 2005 opening of Bar Tartine, a restaurant continuously redefining itself and pushing the boundaries of culinary technique.

In addition to operating establishments, Robertson and Prueitt have a growing portfolio of cookbooks. In 2006, the duo published the Tartine cookbook (Chronicle Books), an anthology of their beloved pastries, and in 2010, Robertson published Tartine Bread (Chronicle Books), a book in which he shared 20 years of acquired bread baking wisdom. From there, he began to explore ancient, heirloom grains, which in turn became the focus of his most recent cookbook, Tartine Book No. 3 (Chronicle Books, December 2013). He is the recipient, with his wife Elisabeth, of the 2008 James Beard Foundation Award for Outstanding Pastry Chef. He has consulted and taught baking classes to professionals and novices in the US and overseas, and he has been written up in a variety premier media outlets, including Bon Appetit, Elle,Food Arts, Food & Wine, Martha Stewart Living, Saveur, and The New York Times.


Jennifer Latham 

Head of Bread AT Tartine

Jennifer Latham has been with Tartine since 2011. She started as a server and worked through pastry at Bar Tartine before landing her dream position on the bread team, eventually becoming head baker. Jennifer comes from family of environmentalists and cares deeply about working with responsible millers and farmers to get the most flavorful and nutritious grains.



Chris Ying 

Co-founder of ZeroFoodprint

After working in professional kitchens throughout his college years at Cal, Chris Ying abandoned food for a career in books. He worked as the publisher of McSweeney’s Publishing in San Francisco and co-founded the magazine Lucky Peach, serving as editor-in-chief for the first twenty issues. In 2017, he began working on a new book series called Dispatches with MAD, the nonprofit organization founded by Rene Redzepi, chef of noma in Copenhagen. Ying has edited and co-written numerous books, including Ivan Ramen and The Mission Chinese Food Cookbook. In 2014, Chris co-founded a nonprofit, ZeroFoodprint, dedicated to helping restaurants and chefs fight climate change. He lives in San Francisco with his wife and daughter.