Arkansas PBS > Engage > Pressroom > Meet the ‘fun guys’ behind Fat Top Farm in new ‘Good Roots’ segment April 8 on Arkansas PBS
Posted 04 Apr 2022
Mushroom farmers fulfilling niche market in The Natural State
CONWAY, Ark. (Arkansas PBS) — The latest segment of “Good Roots” visits Fat Top Farm in Farmington, Arkansas, to see how mushroom farmers are fulfilling a niche demand from customers, chefs and supermarkets. The segment will premiere Friday, April 8, during “Arkansas Week” at 7:30 p.m. on Arkansas PBS and livestreaming at myarpbs.org/watchlive.
Trey Baucum and Zach Taylor saw an untapped niche at the farmers market in Fayetteville, Arkansas, and they jumped in. What was missing at one of the country’s top 50 farmers markets? Mushrooms. The pair have been cultivating their business, Fat Top Farm, ever since. They usually grow about six varieties, all indoors, with precision.
As their business grew, they began selling directly to chefs and at farmers markets, but demand would fluctuate, resulting in extra product that was susceptible to spoilage. With the help of local chef Matt Cooper from The Preachers Son in Bentonville, Arkansas, they started to develop recipes for mushroom jerky and broth. The Arkansas Food Innovation Center became an invaluable resource to get their products approved to sell at a wholesale level. The nonprofit The Food Conservancy has helped Fat Top Farm get their products on the shelves of supermarkets.
This segment of “Good Roots” will give viewers an inside look at Fat Top Farm’s growing process, unique products and expansion opportunities.
“Good Roots,” produced in partnership with Arkansas Farm Bureau, seeks to shine a light on Arkansas’s rich rural culture and communities. Segments focus on the real stories of rural life, while addressing relevant topics like agriculture, health care, the economy, technology, policy and more. The segment airs the second Friday of each month during “Arkansas Week.” Additional information is available at myarpbs.org/GoodRoots.
Segments and bonus footage of “Good Roots” are also featured on all Arkansas PBS digital platforms, including YouTube, Facebook, the Engage Arkansas PBS app and the PBS Video app. A blog series accompanies the segments at myarkansaspbs.org.
Major funding for “Good Roots” is provided by Arkansas Farm Bureau. Additional funding for “Good Roots” is provided by the Union Pacific Foundation.
About Arkansas Farm Bureau
Arkansas Farm Bureau is a nonprofit, private advocacy organization with almost 190,000 families throughout the state working to improve farm and rural life. Farm Bureau is an independent, voluntary organization of farm and ranch families united for the purpose of analyzing their problems and formulating action to achieve educational improvement, economic opportunity, social advancement and promote the national well-being.
About Arkansas PBS
Arkansas PBS, Arkansas’s only statewide public media network, enhances lives by providing lifelong learning opportunities for people from all walks of life. Arkansas PBS delivers daily, essential, local, award-winning productions and classic, trusted PBS programs aimed at sharing Arkansas and the world with viewers through multiple digital platforms, including livestreaming at myarpbs.org/watchlive, on-demand services and YouTube TV, and the distinct channels Arkansas PBS, Arkansas PBS Create, Arkansas PBS KIDS, Arkansas PBS WORLD and Arkansas PBS AIRS on SAP. Members with Arkansas PBS Passport have extended on-demand access to a rich library of public television programming. Arkansas PBS depends on the generosity of Arkansans and the State of Arkansas to continue offering quality programming. Additional information is available at myarkansaspbs.org. Arkansas PBS is broadcast on KETS (Little Rock), KEMV (Mountain View), KETG (Arkadelphia), KAFT (Fayetteville), KTEJ (Jonesboro), KETZ (El Dorado) and KETS (Lee Mountain).