Redefining the Neighborhood Butcher Shop

by Natasha Wolff | January 22, 2015 4:50 pm

Anya Fernald begins most days by Hula-Hooping. It’s how the Oakland-based CEO amuses her infant daughter before making her way to her company’s nearby headquarters. And hoop or not, the rest of her day requires continuous motion.

In addition to Belcampo[1]’s first brick-and-mortar shop, in Larkspur at the Marin Country Mart, she’s also opened butcher shops and restaurants in Pacific Heights, Palo Alto and downtown Los Angeles. “Our business is doubling in size,” she explains, “and a big focus for me is keeping our company culture strong as we go through that boom.” Also in the works: family food-education programs. “In Marin County, we’ll be launching a series for kids and their parents,” she says. “Our first class is trussing and roasting a turkey!”

Anya Fernald

Anya Fernald

Fernald, an early adopter of the Slow Food movement, ran Slow Food Nation before founding Belcampo. Another big project on the horizon: a rum distillery in Belize. “Our distillery in Belize is like a small city,” she explains. “We have our own power plant, huge water-treatment plants and places for people to live.”

When it’s time for lunch, Fernald might take the opportunity to visit an empire outpost. “I am at our store in Marin frequently; I love to stop in there for lunch,” she says. “My go-to order is the Star Route Farms salad with seared steak.”

A Belcampo farmstead

A Belcampo farmstead

Fernald does her best to return home by six o’clock each evening to have dinner with her daughter and husband. What does the honcho of a globe-spanning culinary empire make? Belcampo’s lamb merguez sausage is always a favorite, even for a toddler’s tiny palate. “It’s not too spicy,” Fernald says, “but it does make her mouth pucker a little.”

Even as Belcampo expands, the Slow Food principles of balance and sustainability keep Fernald grounded. Being busy doesn’t have to mean rushing things: “Measure twice, cut once.”

  1. Belcampo:

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