Town That Food Saved
Ben Hewitt

Book cover image

Narrated By: Arthur Morey

Duration: 7 hours and 44 minutes

What to expect

Over the past several years, Hardwick, Vermont, a typical hardscrabble farming community of three thousand residents, has jump-started its economy and redefined its self-image through a local, self-sustaining food system unlike anything else in America. Even as the recent financial downturn threatens to cripple small businesses and privately owned farms, a stunning number of food-based businesses have grown in the region—Vermont Soy, Jasper Hill Farm, Pete’s Greens, Patchwork Farm & Bakery, Applecheek Farm, Claire’s Restaurant and Bar, and Bonnieview Farm, to name only a few. The mostly young entrepreneurs have created a network of community support, meeting regularly to share advice, equipment, and business plans and to loan each other capital. Hardwick is fast becoming a model for other communities hoping to replicate its success.

Hewitt, a journalist and Vermonter, delves deeply into the repercussions of this groundbreaking approach to growing food, both its astounding successes and potential limitations. The captivating story of a small town coming back to life, The Town That Food Saved is narrative nonfiction at its best, full of colorful characters and grounded in an idea that will revolutionize the way we eat.


Cultural studies: food and society, Agriculture, agribusiness and food production industries, Sustainable agriculture

Listen to a sample

“A pleasurable, almost gossipy read.”

San Francisco Chronicle

“This is a smart and lovely book about a smart and lovely experiment.”

Bill McKibben, author of Deep Economy

“Adroitly balancing professional neutrality with personal commitment, Hewitt engagingly examines this paradigm shift in the way a community feeds its citizens.”


“The literary tone and humor make this book more accessible and entertaining.”

School Library Journal

“Narrator Arthur Morey recounts the writer’s journeys to inspect small operations that exemplify the parochial shift. His quiet voice fits the demeanor of the message, written in first person, by the tranquil reporter. Meeting the farmers in many interviews gives listeners an intimate portrait of the commitment and emotions behind this remedy for the nation’s dwindling food supply.”


“Audie-nominated narrator Arthur Morey, with a clean, well-paced reading, sounds very much the way listeners might imagine Vermont resident and farmer Hewitt sounds. He makes this important work most accessible and entertaining.”