The Daily Dirt

My Organic Moment: Mark Liu

This is the first edition of “My Organic Moment,” a series that details the moment in which folks found the Good Food Movement. From health to economic benefits to taste, people connect with Good Food for a variety of reasons. What was your moment? Feel free to share by emailing


Mark Liu (center), chats with Georgia Organics Farmer Services Coordinator Tenisio Seanima (left) and Program Director Michael Wall at Crystal Organic Farm.

If you’ve been to the Morningside Farmers Market– Americas oldest certified organic market – in the last seven years, chances are you’ve seen or heard Mark Liu.

A welcoming and beloved figure for shoppers, Mark is full of energy, advice, and enthusiasm for fresh, healthy produce. He spends most of his time with Nicolas Donck at Crystal Organic Farm, but can also be found working for Robert Currey’s Sparta Mushrooms.

Essentially, he’s a one-stop shop for market knowledge.

He’s also an inspiration for folks looking to heal themselves of various ailments – minor and major. However, Mark wasn’t always full of energy.

While working for a fine jewelry company in Hawaii, Mark began to notice that his energy would leave him.

It got to the point at which he spent almost his entire weekend in bed. When the company sent him to France for meetings, he’d have to land on Friday to ensure he rested enough for Monday’s meeting.

Then came strange fluid drainage. It started in his ear, and wound up leaking out of the back of his knee.

“I was really scared and I had some really mysterious symptoms that were very frightening,” said Mark. “Nobody among my friends or family understood it and it really kind of isolated me.”

Unable to afford treatment, Mark sought out the care of a homeopathic doctor, who based his treatment on a book by Jordan Rubin’s book, Patient Heal Thyself. He completely cut processed foods and switched to a primarily plant-based diet. Then came the tough part: giving up coffee.

“I love coffee. I wish they made coffee cologne,” said Mark. “It just doesn’t like me so I have to stay away from it, even now.”

The entire process made Mark re-think the food system, and his role in it as a consumer. He learned that Hawaii, with an incredible growing climate, imports 90 percent of its food and fuel. In many cases, it is ground zero for GMO testing.

After a series of life changes over the course of four years, Mark wound up in Newborn, Ga. at Crystal Organic Farm.

The pairing was meant to be. After all, Helen Dumba, the mother of Nicolas, who runs the farm today, says she healed herself of ovarian cancer thanks to her organic farm and the healthy diet it provided.

Today, Mark carries on that tradition by helping the greater community.

“When I started to get involved with Crystal Organic Farm, it was about really being in an environment where I knew what I was doing was going to make a contribution to the individual’s well-being,” said Mark.

And his message is born out of ancient wisdom that has been proven true from civilization to civilization:

“Food is your medicine,” said Mark. “It is that simple.”

Interested in Mark’s story? Follow his Facebook page “Eat Like Hippocrates” here.

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