In 2009, NC Choices, in collaboration with the Rural Advancement Foundation International ,NCSU Cooperative Extension and the Natural Capital Investment Fund participated in the development of a pilot project to test the market acceptability of chicken raised and processed locally. We identified considerable interest in the product from both restaurants and retailers.
NC Choices, NCSU, RAFI and NCIF provided organizational infrastructure and resources to support the pilot. NCIF made a grant to fund the purchase and raising of the birds. Piedmont-based poultry farmers raised a test batch of birds under low density conditions using all vegetarian feed without antibiotics. The birds were processed at Chaudhry’s Halal Meats in Siler City. NC Choices identified potential restaurant and retail buyers, distributed free samples and collected feedback.