Tar Heel of the Week: Noah Ranells

August 14, 2011 at 11:37 am Leave a comment

Noah Ranells (Photo by Chuck Liddy cliddy@newsobserver.com)

Noah Ranells walks the talk about sustainable agriculture and its importance to our local economy.  The successful Orange County farmer who also has led the development of a new regional food processing center and a new local-food label,  was named Tar Heel of the Week by The News and Observer. We’re lucky to have him growing and leading in our foodshed.  Here’s an excerpt from Andrea Weigl’s excellent profile.

“In his day job, Noah Ranells develops markets for Orange County farmers. When he goes home, he grows produce for those markets. Ranells, Orange County’s agriculture economic development coordinator, brings unusual insight to the job. Since 2004, he has raised cows, sheep and thousands of chickens on a 60-acre farm in Efland.

“Whether he’s selling eggs, vegetables and meat at local farmers markets or building a moveable chicken house in a 100-degree heat, those experiences allow him to understand the challenges facing small farmers.

“That insight, his peers say, helps Ranells see how to grow the local food system, which is seeing the result of Ranells’ labors.

“This summer, two of Ranells’ projects will come to fruition: the launch of the Piedmont Grown label that identifies local food for consumers; and the opening later this month of the Piedmont Food & Agricultural Processing Center, a food business incubator in Hillsborough.

“While many people were involved in those efforts, his peers say that Ranells, who is too modest to take much credit, was indispensable.

“‘His role in both of those [projects] was as the leader,’ said Debbie Roos, a Chathan County cooperative extension agent who serves on both the Piedmont Grown and the food business boards.'”

Full story here.

Learn more:

Fickle Creek Farm, run by Rannells and Ben Bergmann

Piedmont Food & Agricultural Processing Center

Piedmont Grown, the new local food label

Entry filed under: Politics/ Policy, Sustainable Farming, Sustainable Food. Tags: , , , .

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