5 Questions with Niman Ranch Next Generation Foundation Scholarship Recipient Abigail

Niman Ranch Scholarship Recipient - Abigail Hansen Niman Ranch Next Generation Foundation Scholarship recipient, Abigail Hansen, is a proud farm kid. She grew up helping raise cattle and hogs and cultivating the land for alfalfa, corn and soybeans, alongside her parents, Niman Ranch farmers. Abigail credits her farm upbringing with teaching her the values of hard work and responsibility, which are proving useful as she pursues a degree in agronomy and environmental science.

Abigail is a recipient of the Niman Ranch Next Generation Foundation Scholarship to support her studies. The Foundation was started in 2006 with just one scholarship and over the past 11 years, thanks to our generous donors, has dispersed almost $500,000 to the children of Niman Ranch farmers and ranchers who are committed to furthering their education to support sustainable agriculture and rural communities.

Learn more about Abigail’s roots and aspirations in the five questions below:

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Niman Ranch Gets to Know Executive Chef and Owner Jeff Smedstad of Elote Café

Elote Cafe Chef Jeff We were so excited to get the chance to sit down with executive chef and owner, Jeff Smedstad of Elote Café in Sedona, Arizona. We asked Chef Jeff everything from what inspired him to become a chef to what his last meal on earth would be…Trust us, we were not expecting it.

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Niman Ranch Family Farmer Q&A: Brad and Kirsten of Quit Yer Belly Achin’ Acres

Niman Ranch Family Farmer
Brad and Kirsten of Quit Yer Belly Achin’ Acres

Meet Niman Ranch family farmers, Brad and Kirsten Eckerman of Quit Yer Belly Achin’ Acres, a family-owned and operated farm located in Southern, Wisconsin. These two hard-working farmers raise hogs humanely and sustainably for Niman Ranch. Without these two and the help of their two kids, Brad’s dad and grandfather, Niman Ranch wouldn’t be the same.

We love sharing Q&A’s with Niman Ranch family farmers, and lucky for us, Brad and Kirsten took some time to come inside from their daily chores and a full-time job to answer a few questions about sustainable farming and what it’s like to be a Niman Ranch family farmer.
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Panera Bread and Niman Ranch: Partners in the Good Food Movement

The following blog was written by Jaclynn Knutson, Niman Ranch Next Generation Foundation scholarship recipient. Jaclynn’s family has been raising hogs for Niman Ranch her entire life. You can learn more about Jaclynn here.

Jaclynn of Niman Ranch at Panera Bread Conference

Last month, I traveled to Panera Bread’s annual corporate and franchisee conference in Orlando, FL. At this conference, Ashley DiBlasi, Niman Ranch’s Senior Marketing Director, and I spoke with Panera Bread employees about what makes Niman Ranch so special and provided a face to our brand.read more

Niman Ranch and West Coast Prime Host Good Food Celebration at APL Restaurant

By: Wendy Meadley, good food evangelist and communications leader collaborating with the James Beard Foundation, Women Chefs and Restaurateurs, Chefs Collaborative and other leading organizations in the culinary arena.

Last week, I was honored to attend a special dinner event co-hosted by one of Niman Ranch’s independent distributors, West Coast Prime Meats and Chef Adam Perry Lang.

The event took place at APL, in Hollywood. More than 150 industry notables oversold the event spilling into every space including the kitchen, which became part of the theater of the evening. These chefs, industry professionals and food system thought leaders truly care about how food is produced. I left the event convinced that the Good Food Movement is alive and well in Hollywood and throughout Southern California.

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Chinese New Year 2019: The Year of the Pig Inspired Recipes

New Years Pig Illustration
Source: Wikimedia Commons/Fanghong

February 5, 2019 marks the Chinese New Year and millions of observers across the globe will be celebrating this auspicious occasion. Each year is represented by one animal in the Chinese Zodiac and 2019 is the year of the pig – a Niman Ranch favorite! We couldn’t resist sharing some Chinese New Year inspired all-natural pork recipes to celebrate. read more

Niman Ranch Q&A with Pinch Chinese

 

Pinch Chinese - Chef Hua Zhang

Located in the SoHo neighborhood of New York City, Pinch Chinese, is making headlines for their delicious dishes and are being featured on websites like The New York Times, Eater, and Chowhound. Of course, we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to interview, Chef Hua Zhang and learn more about his passion for cooking and why he uses Niman Ranch at Pinch Chinese.

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Niman Ranch Scholarship Recipients Attend the National Young Farmers Coalition Convergence

I recently had the opportunity to travel to Washington D.C. on behalf of Niman Ranch to attend the National Young Farmers Coalition (NYFC) Convergence. This was their fourth annual event, bringing in about 100 farmers from all around the country. When attending something like this that’s so far from home, it’s always nice to see some familiar faces. Fortunately for me, I was not the only Niman Ranch attendee. Raeanna Crile, a Niman Ranch Next Generation Foundation Scholarship recipient whose father raises hogs for Niman Ranch, flew in from Dordt College for the convergence. Kerri McClimen, who leads Communications for Niman was also there to support the partners and provide guidance.

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Our Favorite Media Moments of 2018

Can you believe 2018 is almost over? We can’t! As we look back, we wanted to reflect on Niman in the News and recognize our farmers and ranchers. They often do not have time to take stock of the national news they make from producing the finest tasting meat.

From a January feature on Dr. Oz about bacon that led to another invitation to come on again to talk about beef, we were thrilled to share vital information on the importance of sustainable, antibiotic-free meats that captured the attention of millions.

This year we were also featured in The New York Times for having one of the best bratwursts, Real Simple for hot dogs, and Southern Living for bacon, among many more.

Let’s take a moment to look back at our top 10 favorite media moments of 2018 and thank our farmers and ranchers who helped make it possible.

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Chef Q&A: Chef Bradley Herron of Genuine Hospitality Group

Chef Bradley Herron is the Director of Culinary for the Genuine Hospitality Group. He started his journey at the Genuine Hospitality Group at the flagship restaurant, Michael’s Genuine Food and Drink as the Chef de Cuisine. He now works out of the corporate office and oversees over ten restaurants including the newest restaurant in Cleveland that’s set to open in April 2019.

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