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Priddy's store was hopping today…

Ron Taylor in Priddy’s store with some of his products that Priddy’s sells

Coming home from the post office at Danbury, I stopped at Priddy’s General Store today to pick up a few things. There were a lot of customers, but in between ringing up customers Jane Priddy still found time to talk with me about local issues, as we often do when I’m in the store. We were discussing the local farmers and local products and ways to better connect customers like me with the people who have local produce and products to sell. Jane was telling me about a man in Eastern North Carolina whose business has expanded to help get local products on the market. For example, he produces and cans the sweet potato butter made from the Stokes Purple sweet potatoes.

By the strangest of coincidences, a man in the store who had overheard much of our conversation let us know that he was that very man. He was on a business trip to this part of the state, and he had stopped in to have a look at Priddy’s store, which he had never seen before.

People like Ron Taylor and Jane Priddy are the kind of people who have done much to help rural North Carolina find its way to a new kind of local, sustainable economy. Ron is the president of Taylor Manufacturing, which has made equipment for tobacco farmers for many years but which expanded to make make equipment for winemakers. Ron has also started a vineyard, Lu Mil Vineyard. He served in the state legislature for several years, and he has served on a number of boards having to do with economic development and agricultural tourism.

Ron gave Jane and me bottles of his new muscadine wine. I can’t wait to try it.

On the left is an alcohol-free juice made from the native muscadine grapes. On the right is a new muscadine wine that Ron is now producing.

Priddy’s General Store


  1. brother doc wrote:

    I don’t know if, being from the Left Coast, you know about muscadine grapes/wine but for anyone with a sophisticated Napa-Sonoma palate this stuff is rotgut, so sweet it will rot your teeth… Enjoy unique NC products, yes indeedy, but muscadine is definitely best left to the eastern NC rednecks, in my opinion. Post what you think after you take a glass.

    Saturday, January 23, 2010 at 6:54 pm | Permalink
  2. brother doc wrote:

    Forgot to mention that I enjoy looking in on you every now and again, I am further up in NWNC than you but enjoy for the most part life around these parts and like you I am no native, rather grew up about 15 miles from New York or as we always said, “the City.” I’ve come a long way, baby…

    Saturday, January 23, 2010 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

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