Nina was born at home in Buffalo, New York in 1971. The doctor who attended the birth rubbed her with olive oil. She was raised on the family farm in Virginia, fed on simple real foods like raw milk from the family cow and a lot of vegetables. At age 9, Nina sold produce at roadside stands. Business was slow. In 1980, the first proper farmers’ markets opened nearby, and from then on, the Plancks made a living—and sent two kids to college—selling local food.
Nina left farming to work on Capitol Hill, report for TIME Magazine, and write speeches for the U.S. ambassador to London, but local food was ever on her mind. In 1999, she opened the first farmers’ markets in London and today her company, London Farmers’ Markets, runs fourteen markets.
Tempted by England’s finest producers of roast beef and raw milk cheddar, Nina wondered about the advice most Americans get about diet. After a few dutiful— and unhealthy—years in the vegan, vegetarian, and non-fat wilderness, she came home to real food, and she explains why in Real Food. Her ‘persuasive, invigorating’ argument—that’s Michael Pollan talking—opened tasty doors for eaters who’d had enough of low-fat and imitation foods.
Young Julian arrived in 2006. Hence Nina’s latest book, Real Food for Mother and Baby. Once again, Nina found the prenatal and pediatric world rich with myths and misunderstandings about real food. She dismantles each misconception in typically direct style.
Nina lives in Greenwich Village with Rob Kaufelt, proprietor of Murray’s Cheese and their children Julian, who was born in 2006, and Jacob and Rose, who were born in 2009.