July 2016 – As the FreshPoint apprentice, Sarah Massey has been learning a great deal about wholesale marketing and food service. Studying food and nutrition at Meredith College, she found a particular interest in local and sustainable agriculture, so she was excited to work with Senior VP Chris Woodring to help more local farmers connect with FreshPoint.

Sarah was tasked with finding eight new, local growers who fit FreshPoint’s vendor requirements. She’s also been visiting and updating the profiles for FreshPoint’s existing local growers. Sarah says, “Being able to interact with the farmer directly-that’s been really great in creating and strengthening farmer relationships with FreshPoint.” Sarah also created a master seasonality calendar that can be used as a reference for buyers looking to purchase local food, and has participated in meetings with Chris and two food hubs seeking to partner with FreshPoint.

Additionally, Sarah has learned about the ins-and-outs of warehouse and food safety and about FreshPoint’s novel “Unusual but Usable” program, which finds markets for cosmetically imperfect produce. As someone who is passionate about reducing food waste, this program has been of particular interest.

This article originally appeared in the July 2016 NC Growing Together Newsletter.