J.I. Rodale, who founded Rodale Inc. in 1930, knew that there was a direct relationship between the declining health of America’s soil and the health
of America’s people – which was quite a revolutionary view in those days.
In 1942, he started Organic Farming and Gardening magazine, today known as Organic Gardening, which taught people how to grow better food by cultivating healthier soil using natural techniques. J.I. put his theories into practice on a 60-acre farm near Emmaus, Pennsylvania (which is now the site of the Working Tree Center). J.I.’s ideas slowly took root and spread. Today, he is widely recognized as the father of the organic movement in America.
In 1950, J.I. introduced Prevention, a magazine that presented systematic ways people could try to prevent illness and disease, rather than wait for the need to cure it, another idea that bucked the established thinking of the day. The Prevention brand, has since expanded quite a bit.
Following J.I.’s death in 1971, his son Bob – who had been president since
1951 – took over the leadership of the company. During his tenure, Rodale consistently published highly acclaimed books on gardening, health, home improvement, and fitness. Rodale grew into the strong, positive force it is today, spreading the message “You can do it” across the pages of numerous books and magazines, all reflecting the philosophy that people really can take charge of their own lives.
Rodale Institute’s motto, Healthy Soil = Healthy Food = Healthy People, was first chalked onto a blackboard by J.I. in 1947.
Even then, J.I. understood that healthy soil is the foundation for growing healthy food. They are as committed today as ever to J.I. Rodale’s conviction and the work Robert Rodale continued when he planted the Rodale roots on a 333-acre farm outside of Kutztown, Pennsylvania.
Today, privately held Rodale is the world’s leading health and wellness content company, with print, digital, video and e-commerce properties that resonate with millions of customers around the world. It is home to some of the most successful and well-regarded health and wellness brands, including , including Men’s Health, Prevention,Runner’s World, Women’s Health, Bicycling, Rodale’s Organic Life and Running Times. Rodale also maintains its tradition of publishing bestselling diet, fitness, nutrition, health, wellness, science, and lifestyle books, including Vice President Al Gore’s An Inconvenient Truth, Organic Manifesto: How Organic Food Can Heal Our Planet, Feed the World, and Keep Us Safe by Maria Rodale, and the best-selling Flat Belly Diet! The company is also a leader in direct-response marketing and has more than 27 million active customers in its database.