Our trip to the Taste! Gourmet Show & Expo in Myrtle Beach last weekend was an experience that I’m eager to repeat. The show was fun and the setting was enjoyable as I’ve shared, but the main reason I say that is because of the people that we met. The vendors with whom we spoke were hard-working, creative and dedicated small business people. They each had a dream and acted upon it. They each decided to put their time, resources, energy and emotion into products that they believed in whole-heartedly.
These entrepreneurs could have looked for the least expensive ingredients they could find, but they didn’t. They could have neglected quality and consistency, but they didn’t. They also could have ignored South Carolina, but they didn’t. They went in a different direction by making a commitment to Certified South Carolina. Products that bear the Certified South Carolina logo are special in my mind. They use the resources that are practically in our backyards and they leverage them nutritionally, environmentally and financially. All three benefit not only the final products created, but our communities and each of us who enjoy them.
After chatting with the individuals responsible for creating, developing and marketing the products that will be shared in this series, I decided to highlight them here on PeeDeeFoodie.com. This isn’t advertising, it’s enthusiasm. I urge you to read a bit about them, visit their websites and try their products. By doing so, you won’t just be supporting them, you’ll also be supporting our great Palmetto State and the farmers and entrepreneurs that are the backbone of our agriculture and agri-tourism industries.
The first booth we visited this past Saturday was that of Hyman Vineyards. The Hyman family created Hyman Vineyards as a natural products company that has a hand in all aspects of the vineyard, including: growing, formulating, producing and marketing our line of natural products. By doing this, Hyman Vineyards is helping set the stage for alternative crop growing throughout the state of South Carolina and the entire Southern region, where muscadines, and other related botanicals, are native to the soil.
According to Hyman Vineyards, growing alternative crops such as muscadine grapes is just one of many powerful ways farmers have the opportunity to grow healthy, natural crops for a commercial purpose other than simply selling fresh produce. Hyman Vineyards grows three varietals of muscadine grapes: Carlos, Noble, & Doreen. Each type of muscadine grape grows differently and requires special attention to each varietal’s specific needs. Not always understood, muscadines are an excellent source of many of the nutrients we need daily. All varieties of muscadine grapes grown at the vineyard benefit from the rich, fertile soils of the South Carolina Pee Dee Coastal Plain. Beyond wines and juices, Hyman Vineyards also produces products containing nutraceutical compounds recognized to aid human health. They focus on using plant extracts containing these nutraceutical compounds for both external (skin care & specialty products, like lotions) and internal (antioxidant dietary supplements) usage.
Later that day, we stopped at the Second To None Foods booth for a taste of their Second to None Salsa. Available in Mild, Medium and Hot, the firm and the recipe was created by Turbeville family of York, South Carolina and a friend and business partner. Everett, husband and father, personally developed the recipe, but he admits that the best palate in the family belongs to his wife, Charity.
Everett had the salsa that everyone loved and his friend had the faith and encouragement for the salsa to go beyond the neighborhood shelf. This friend had bigger visions and wanted to see Everett’s salsa in homes across the country. Together they are working to share their love of food with the nation by making available the fabulous recipes created in their home kitchens.
The firm has a stated goal of delivering an exceptional product with no compromises. Mrs. PDF loves salsa. Suffice it to say, she loves this salsa and you will too. Second To None Foods vows to create and continue to deliver healthy salsa by including all natural products with no preservatives, more vegetables and less paste. According to the product website, if you’re not completely satisfied send the remaining product back for a full refund. As their tag-line states, Second to None Salsa is “Simply the BEST”. You can reach them on Facebook or contact them directly at (803) 280-4738 or .
Sources: The title of this series of posts, “Home, Sweet and Homegrown” is an adaption of a quote from a Fresh on the Menu brochure published by the South Carolina Department of Agriculture. Information about each product highlighted above was obtained through conversations with the owners/representatives and through their websites.
Category: Featured Articles
About the AuthorKevin Barron is a husband, father, self-described geek, and enthusiastic founder of PeeDeeFoodie.com. He also hosts its companion podcast, the Pee Dee Food Show, which can be found on iTunes and the blog. Learn more about Kevin under the Contributors tab above.
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