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Plant-Based Careers Panel

with Laney Siegner, Charlie Reed, and Kate McGee

Laney completed her Ph.D. at the U.C. Berkeley Energy and Resources Group where she researched sustainable, agroecological food systems and climate change education, and spent several summers working on diversified vegetable farms. She has published book chapters on teaching climate change in U.S. K-12 classrooms and on conducting participatory agroecology research. Laney now works for Climate School as the Director of the Climate Farm School program, a hybrid online and on-farm learning opportunity for adult professionals. When she's not teaching or learning, she enjoys being outside for a variety of physical activities- farming, worm composting, trail running, bird watching, or swimming in the ocean. Originally from the East Coast, she now lives in Sonoma County, California. She helped build the off-grid tiny house that she now lives in with her partner, as part of the first-ever California Tiny House Competition.

A dedicated advocate for food systems transformation, climate justice and health equity, Charlie Reed is currently the Director of Environmental and Social Impact at PopSockets. Previously, she has led impact initiatives at innovative beverage companies Califia Farms and Outbound Brewing, as well as served as a freelance corporate sustainability consultant and content contributor for EatBlue. Charlie is a graduate of UC Berkeley (BS Environmental Studies + Public Policy) and the University of Oxford (MSc Environmental Governance) and currently lives in San Francisco.

Kate McGee is the Talent Acquisition Partner at Oatly

Notes on careers in plant based food:

  • Many different types of careers in plant based food: nutrition professional, nutrition educator, entrepreneur, researcher, food scientist, public health/health care, etc. 

  • Report from ILO states that 19 million jobs in plant based sector would be created in Latin America and Caribbean as part of decarbonizing the economy, more than making up for jobs lost in livestock and fossil fuel sectors. Plant-based agriculture and food production named 1 of sectors poised for most growth between now and 2030; “Jobs in a Net-Zero Emissions Future”  


Three key points for overview: 

  • Plant based careers are proliferating and job titles are incredibly diverse → many people can plug in with their skillsets. This is similar to “climate careers” as a whole

  • Plant based food careers are integral part of transforming the food system, which we know must be transformed in order to mitigate climate change; there is no solving climate change without overhauling our current food system 

  • is an online climate school and community dedicated to helping people upskill and transition to climate action work. We do that by offering courses, job fairs, and networking events for our community. 

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