Our story began with the baker. The year was 2008. And the price of wheat had just hit the roof. This was due to a number of factors-- on farm and on Wall Street (see our press page for the link to Harper's article, The Food Bubble: How Wall Street Starved Millions and Got Away With It). At its worst, the price of wheat rose as much as 130% and the price of flour rose beyond what could be passed along to the customer. For the baker, it became all too apparent how disconnected we all were from this most essential ingredient of our daily bread. And so the North Carolina Organic Bread Flour Project was born, with the goal of closing the gap between the farmer and baker in the Carolinas.
The result of this four year grant- funded project (thank you NC Tobacco Trust Fund, Santa Fe Tobacco, Community Foundation of Western NC, and the Carolina Farm Stewardship Association) and the active participation of a pilot group of seven Western NC bakeries, as well as partnerships and support from NC State University and wheat breeder Dr David Marshall and his assistant Myron Fountain, of the USDA-ARS, was launch of Carolina Ground, L3C.