"Dreams, if you believe, can become reality" - James Brett, founder of Plant for Peace
The saying goes; that which does not kill us makes us stronger. James Brett proves the point.
James is the Founder of Plant for Peace, a global initiative aimed at bringing sustainable stability to countries crippled by conflict by the creation of horticultural cooperatives. It’s a remarkable initiative currently focused on Afghanistan, where James has single-handedly persuaded 22,000 farmers to stop growing poppies - the source of much of the world’s heroin - and start growing pomegranates and other high-value horticulture produce instead. The ‘fruits’ of this initiative is a range of innovative products the first of which – an organic yoghurt covered fruit bar – can be found in Waitrose and Holland & Barrett from May 2015.
But if James had never set foot in Afghanistan, had never toured this troubled country without a bodyguard, badge or gun his achievements would still be mind-boggling because his life story is truly astonishing.
It’s a story which includes child abuse by his grandfather, the early tragic death of his mother, his subsequent decline into drug addiction, homelessness, prison, betrayal, violence and mental illness. Ultimately it’s a breath-taking story of recovery, hope, humility and remarkable vision supported by a cast of farmers, academics, multinational food companies, government officials, philanthropists, celebrities, military leaders, royal families and the entire nation of Afghanistan.
James shares his story in a searingly honest, deeply moving and ultimately inspiring 60-minute session.
Companies that have invited James to share his story include; Ben & Jerry's, Unilever, Google, The Marketing Academy, Freud Communications, Brand Learning, Spark Inside, Asia Scotland Institute, The Soil Association.