The Chatham Food Hub project emerged at a time when it was most needed. Led by Eleanor Wertman, MPH (Program Manager, Community Health at UNC Health Alliance | Population Health Services), it is a significant and innovative project melding food, drink, chefs, and community. Our hospitality businesses (caterers, restaurateurs, chefs, farmers) will serve guests Wednesdays in Siler City at Bray Park this summer.
Our Chatham Food Hub series profiles all the charter members of this drive-through food court, with pre-orders taken online.
Katelyn Bailey is the farmer and owner of Ever Reach Farm (Pittsboro, NC), which started operating this summer. Katelyn has a wealth of experience in growing, cooking, and sharing produce. The last three years, she gained a diversity of knowledge, techniques, and skills working on area farms learning from her agriculture industry counterparts; beyond farming, she took to heart the responsibility of being a farmer, for herself, the environment, and the community. It made her work complete and provides a path for the principles that guide her future in farming.
Katelyn attended North Carolina State University for agriculture, and like so many guests, she found Chatham County “to be a real jewel in the pocket of a small NC town–it has such strong community ties and a true appreciation for people and farming.” Katelyn quickly felt ingrained in the community and found it welcoming that the a joint nature of learning and sharing exists among others she has met. She expresses, “the sense of community, coupled with a passion for working in synchrony with the environment, is the meaning behind what I do as a farmer.”
The Hub is ideal for Ever Reach Farm as Katelyn finds immense joy in cooking and sharing the bounty, a big reason she works to create a balance between farming and adding value to products that she hopes people will appreciate. She would likely be a chef if farming was not her true passion and primary focus.
“I joined the Chatham Food Hub because I believe the “food hub” style of organization is precisely what we need, not only for this time of a pandemic, but for the sake of creating a mutually beneficial system that benefits farmers, the community, and aggregators. As a farmer, especially as a beginning farmer, every hour spent away from the farm is time you could be spending to ensure smooth operation, increase production to feed more people, and so on. For the consumer, this provides more convenience in the form of pre-orders, access, and consistent pick up times. I am very excited to be participating in this venture, and I look forward to building
relationships with new customers, in this way.”
About the Hub
Contact us for details about contributing to the Chatham Food Hub. Special thanks to Eleanor Wertman, Program Manager, Community Health, UNC Health Alliance | Population Health Services and The Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention. All vendors are encouraged to join the Count On Me NC initiative, a joint effort created by government and health officials in partnership with industry leaders from across the state.