Grower-Buyer Meetings

Grower-buyer meetings are a chance for farmers and producers to introduce themselves to grocers, distributors, and chefs and discuss products and potential interest. There are no promises made and no contracts signed; it’s just a chance to open a door and follow up later. For growers who are just getting started, this is a great opportunity to learn about individual buyer requirements.

The Grower-Buyer Meeting will be held during the extended lunch at ASAP’s Business of Farming Conference on Saturday, Feb. 24, 2024, 12:15 to 2:15, at A-B Tech in Asheville. The meeting is open to anyone attending the conference. Register here!

In addition to the annual Grower-Buyer Meeting at the Business of Farming Conference, ASAP offers periodic stand-alone events, both virtually and in person.  Are you a buyer interested in meeting with local farmers? Contact David Smiley with any questions.

Participating Buyers

The Biltmore Company

Location: Asheville, NC
Description: Hospitality destination with restaurants of varying styles and levels of service.
Desired Products: produce, specialty
Requirements: 1MM / incidence insurance; sustainable practices

Boone Street Market

Location: Jonesborough, TN
Description: Nonprofit year-round specialty grocery and farmers market.
Desired Products: unusual produce and value-added products
Requirements: Insurance; certifications are helpful


Location: Asheville, NC
Description: High-volume Spanish tapas restaurant with a very consistent menu.

Equal Plates Project

Location: Asheville, NC
Description: Nonprofit that aims to support local farmers and build community through scratch-made meals.
Desired Products: carrots

Foothills Food Hub

Location: Marion, NC
Description: Nonprofit under McDowell Local Food Advisory Council that purchases local produce, meat, and eggs. We take these products and give them out to the community.
Desired Products: produce, meat, eggs

The Garden

Location: Mobile Business
Description: Small food truck and catering business. We prioritize sourcing locally whenever possible.
Desired Products: produce, meat
Requirements: Prefer organic

Grove Park Inn

Location: Asheville, NC
Description: Large hotel operation that prides itself in scratch cooking and working toward a significant improvement in utilizing local products.
Desired Products: produce, meat, honey, cider, vinegar, tea, oils, nuts, seeds, spices
Requirements: $1M and up liability coverage; chemical free as much as possible

Happy Dirt

Location: Durham, NC
Description: Wholesale distributor of organic produce. We source as locally as possible and primarily work with retail customers.
Desired Products: specialty produce
Requirements: Third-party certification such as GAP, Primus, or USDA Organic

Haywood Common

Location: Asheville, NC
Description: Farm-to-table style casual restaurant.
Desired Products: produce, grains, meats

La Bodega by Cúrate

Location: Asheville, NC
Description: Cafe, bakery, and restaurant serving modern Spanish cuisine.

Mother Earth Food

Location: Asheville, NC
Description: Home delivery business connecting local farmers with consumers and promoting sustainable, farm-to-table practices.
Desired Products: produce, meats, fish, value-added products
Requirements: Non-GMO, no antibiotics or hormones; prefer organic and sustainable practices, Humane Certified

Mountain Food Products

Location: Asheville, NC
Description: Wholesale produce company with a focus on local. In addition to serving Asheville area establishments, we offer a multi-farm CSA.
Desired Products: produce

OWL Bakery

Location: Asheville, NC
Description: Artisan bakery specializing in organic sourdough breads and pastries. We are aiming to introduce house-made preserves using unusual heirloom varieties of fruits.
Desired Products: produce, grains (especially heirloom varieties), foraged products
Requirements: Prefer organic practices, biodynamic, low-spray

Red Fiddle Vittles

Location: Asheville, NC
Description: Caterer and local market.
Desired Products: produce, meats
Requirements: Prefer sustainable and regenerative agricultural practices, pasture-raised, antibiotic/hormone-free meats

Strada Italiano and Gemelli

Location: Asheville, NC
Description: Two Italian restaurant concepts in downtown and West Asheville.
Desired Products: produce, mushrooms
Requirements: Insurance

Swamp Rabbit Cafe and Grocery

Location: Greenville, SC
Description: Kitchen, cafe, grocery, and food hub that support a sustainable food system and allow local farmers and food makers to thrive.
Desired Products: produce
Requirements: Prefer organic practices

TRACTOR Food & Farms

Location: Spruce Pine, NC
Description: Nonprofit food hub serving Western North Carolina farmers and consumers through CSA, wholesale, and farmer support programs.
Desired Products: fruits, nuts, specialty produce
Requirements: Product liability insurance and general food safety policy; FarmShare approved

How to Prepare for a Grower-Buyer Meeting

Have farm materials available to share digitally. Helpful items might include:

  • Price sheets
  • Projected product availability
  • Brochure or fact sheet with info about insurances, food safety, delivery terms and area, packaging, etc.
  • Photos of the farm
  • Product samples

Don’t be intimidated if you don’t have these items. Depending on the buyer and your stage of business development, a quick “get to know you chat” and a handshake might be right. The buyers we invite are friendly and are there to educate and inform as well as to source product.

Here are some questions you might like to ask:

  • What are your specs for my product line? (size, packaging, ripeness, preferred cuts, etc.)
  • What volume of my products might you be interested in purchasing?
  • What insurance, food safety, and labeling/packaging requirements do you have?
  • What is your preferred delivery schedule?
  • How do you like to make orders? (phone call, fax form, email, etc.)
  • How can I follow up on this meeting? What would be the right timing to connect again?

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