NC Choices Hosts Women Working in the Meat Business Retreat
NC Choices is hosting a Women Working in the Meat Business Retreat May 20th – 22 in Chapel Hill, NC. The retreat, sponsored by the Farm Credit Associations of North Carolina, is in response to the emerging role of female professionals within meat businesses. “Women are increasingly playing a leadership role in the meat sector, whether it’s as livestock producers, meat butchers, chefs or business owners,” says NC Choices’ Program Coordinator, Sarah Blacklin. “We’ve developed a unique retreat designed to address the challenges female professionals face in a male-dominated arena."
The two-day, two-night retreat will focus on hands-on meat cutting, marketing, and merchandising. Both sessions will be facilitated by Master Butcher Kari Underly, author of The Art of Beef Cutting: A Meat Professional’s Guide to Butchering and Merchandising.
The Farm Credit Associations of North Carolina are providing scholarships for female producers, meat processors, and food professionals located in North Carolina. “This is an important need and we are thrilled to be supporting NC Choices’ program,” said Maggie Hamm, SVP of Marketing for Carolina Farm Credit in Statesville, NC. “This event will be a superb opportunity for women who work in local and niche meat business to learn more about the important role they are playing in advancing the local meat industry.”
A number of local business are also sponsoring the event, including Lantern Restaurant, which will provide space for participants to learn how to breakdown a beef and hog carcass, fabricate specialty cuts and create and prepare value-added products. The Chapel Hilltop Lodge, a unique agri-tourism lodge located on 46 acres and eight miles outside of Chapel Hill, will provide retreat accommodations.
“We look forward to bringing our female leaders together to network and increase their technical skills,” says NC Choice’s Blacklin.
FOR REGISTRATION AND SCHOLARSHIP INFORMATION AS WELL AS SPONSORSHIP OPPORTUNITIES: Contact Meredith McKissick at email@example.com
Retreat Package: $400 per participant. Includes overnight accommodations at The Chapel Hilltop Lodge eight miles outside Chapel. Lodge sits on 46 acres and features an organic garden, saltwater pool, extensive balconies, patios, pool table, exercise room and expansive common space in a beautiful agricultural setting. Meals include complimentary breakfast, lunch at the Carolina Brewery, cocktail social hour, and a special dinner at Lantern Restaurant, recognized by Gourmet Magazine as one of "America's Top 50 Restaurants" and "best farm-to-table restaurants". Participants will gain hands-on whole hog and beef butchery training from Kari Underly, a third generation meat cutter, inventor of the flat iron steak, and James Beard Award nominee. Participants will improve their understanding of how to market and merchandise meat products with increased proficiency, communication, and confidence in an intimate environment with top industry professionals. Participants will learn how to make specialty sausages and leave the retreat with meat to take home for their families. Butchery classes will be located in “Lantern Table”, Lantern restaurant’s new community kitchen and private dining room on Franklin St. in downtown Chapel Hill. Space is Limited to 25 participants and registration occurs on a first come first serve basis.
The Center for Environmental Farming Systems (CEFS) is a partnership of North Carolina State University, North Carolina A&T State University, and the North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. CEFS’ mission is to develop and promote food and farming systems that protect the environment, strengthen local communities, and provide economic opportunities in North Carolina and beyond.