News & Story Ideas
With the global food industry struggling to cope with transportation restrictions and other impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic, the local food movement gives people healthy options that are thousands of miles fresher. Experts from Olivette Riverside Community and Farm, Western North Carolina’s first and only “agrihood,” share how people can support local agriculture — and their health.
Agrihoods such as Olivette are part of a nationwide trend of communities designed to foster connections between people, their food, and the environment. With the pandemic limiting recreation opportunities for many people, Olivette’s founders discuss how people benefit when communities are built around gardens, trails, streams, forests, and other natural features.
Millennials want walkability and a sense of community. Seniors don’t want to be isolated or live in institutional settings. Families seek safe, healthy neighborhoods for their kids. And now the effects of the pandemic have more people looking to live where they can play outdoors and telework from home. Olivette’s experts discuss how agrihoods deliver on all fronts.
Built around a working organic farm, Olivette provides produce to Asheville area restaurants and residents of the community and beyond through its CSA (community-supported agriculture) program. Olivette’s experts discuss how they are adapting their farm and CSA during the pandemic so that people can still enjoy fresh local produce.
At Olivette, pesticides are banned, native plants are required, and all houses rely on development-wide geothermal heating and cooling and must meet high standards for energy efficiency. Olivette’s experts discuss how people can make their own homes and gardens more environmentally friendly.
Installing a single geothermal heat pump is estimated to have the equivalent environmental benefit of planting 750 trees. At Olivette, development-wide geothermal heating and cooling benefits residents and the environment. Experts explain how this clean, sustainable, and efficient technology cuts energy bills and fossil fuel use while keeping homes comfy.
The Olivette Service Corps is a group of Olivette residents who are committed to being of service to individuals and families who are in need of support. Leaders discuss their work to improve people’s access to fresh healthy food, increase nutrition literacy, and build wellness in the Greater Asheville area at a time when many people are struggling due to the pandemic and recession.
Olivette’s community chefs share some of their favorite recipe for making the most of produce in season, from winter squash curry to jalapeño lime blackberry jam.
Family, community, education, and sustainable happiness are Olivette’s core values and major reasons why the community was recognized by the NC Home Builders Association as Community of the Year and Best Sustainable Community. Olivette’s founders discuss principles for developing healthy, connected communities.
The term agrihoods is new, but the concept isn’t. For millennia before the industrial revolution, people lived in communities built around farms and close to the sources of their food. Olivette experts discuss the perennial pull of the “back to the land” ethic — and how increased environmental consciousness and feelings of isolation due to technology are fueling a renaissance of livable, walkable communities built around farming.
For over a century, Asheville, N.C., has been a destination for people seeking health and wellness in amid stunning natural resources Surrounded by primordial forests, the tallest peaks of the ancient Southern Appalachians, and attractions such as the Blue Ridge Parkway, Great Smoky Mountains National Park and French Broad River, the city attracts an eclectic mix: artists, nature lovers, and leaders in health and wellness, green living and environmental sustainability. Olivette experts discuss why it’s the perfect spot to plant a new agrihood.
Olivette’s visionary founders chose the site of a former family farm as the spot to plant seeds of community, healthy food and sustainability. Residents discuss why they are choosing farm-to-table living for their health and families in the face of massive uncertainty fueled by the pandemic.
Olivette founding partner Allison Smith is a North Carolina Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor in addition to her role helping to plan, design and develop the agrihood and its community-building events. She discusses how time in nature can help people relieve stress they feel due to the massive disruption that the pandemic has caused in their lives.
Virtual open houses, socially distant home tours and increasing online communication with clients are some of the ways tech-savvy communities such as Olivette are reaching buyers. Olivette’s experts discuss how the pandemic is altering the way people shop for homes.
Founders of Olivette discuss how they have designed programs and amenities to foster community, including campfires, dog meet-ups, community gardens, shared bikes, and trails— and how they have adapted to social distancing rules while working to maintain a “summer camp” feel.