Business Roundup: Business and Food Industry Conference is Friday

Published 12:00 am Sunday, March 1, 2015

Food vendors can learn about the process of doing business with large, chain grocery stores, like Walmart and Whole Foods, and also how to get grants from the USDA during a conference Friday at First United Methodist Church of Salisbury at 217 Church Street.

The conference is from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. and will have sessions with speakers including N.C. Secretary of State Elaine Marshall, USDA officials and individuals from the corporate sector.

The event, called the Business and Food Industry Conference, is organized by The Carolina Taste, run by Constance Johnson, and there is a $15 registration fee.

Marshall will speak at 9 a.m. Randall Gore, the state’s director of rural development for the United States Department of Agriculture, will speak during a lunch at 12:30 p.m.

Other people scheduled to speak at the conference include Lyn Millhiser, a value added producer grant specialist for the USDA and Steve Pinkston, a senior sourcing manager for Walmart.

To see a complete list of speakers and more information, or to register, visit or call 980-643-0411.

Local financial advisor offering digital investing

Falcon Investments has teamed up with Betterment Institutional to offer a new online investing service in North Carolina. Falcon Investments will launch eFalcon Advisor, a service that combines the convenience of online investing with expert advice from a local financial advisor.

With eFalcon Advisor, people can open an account, set investment goals, receive customized advice, and a globally-diversified portfolio tailored to their risk and time horizon. The platform takes the guesswork out of investing while a financial advisor provides advice and help as needed.

“I created eFalcon Advisor to make it easy for investors to take action and start investing” said Seth Waller, founder and president of Falcon Investments. “Taking that first step is so important — yet I’ve found that the high account minimums and hassles of working with a traditional financial advisor made it so difficult to get started. I believe in the convenience of online investing, but know the significant value a financial advisor brings to the table — eFalcon Advisor offers that unique combination.”

“We’re excited to have eFalcon Advisor on our platform,” said Jon Stein, founder and CEO of Betterment Institutional. “Seth is a forward thinker — he understands that technology is a tool that simplifies investing for clients, while providing a level of sophistication unmatched by traditional financial advisors.”

For more information on eFalcon Advisor, visit or contact Seth Waller at 704-603-4177 or

Southern States selling emblems for FFA

RICHMOND, Va. — The cashier at Southern States might ask you to part with an extra dollar this month.

Southern States is supporting the National Future Farmers of America Organization by selling FFA emblems for $1. The campaign takes place through March.

“We are deeply appreciative of Southern States and their assistance to raise financial support for FFA and heighten community awareness about our organization,” said Molly Ball, president of the National FFA Foundation. “Funds raised through the sale of the FFA emblem at Southern States stores will support FFA at the local, state and national level and ensure that we’re able to continue to develop students’ leadership, growth and career success potential.”

Southern States is a supporter of FFA and is proud to be the sponsor of the “I’m Supporting FFA” fundraiser, said Thomas R. Scribner, president and CEO of Southern States. “Every dollar collected will benefit FFA members across the area. Southern States has a rich heritage of working with FFA and hopes the public will assist with the project by supporting the effort and contributing a dollar for a personalized paper FFA emblem.”

After you buy an emblem, you can sign your name on it or even the name of a child you care about. The emblems will then be displayed in the store for all to see. Proceeds are split between the local FFA chapter, the state FFA association and the National FFA Foundation.

Restaurant holding grand opening 

Chopsticks Asian Bistro Restaurant and Bar is holding its grand opening through the month of March.

The restaurant is located at 1510 Stokes Ferry Road and offers Chinese, Japanese and Thai food. Grand opening specials include 50 percent off alcoholic drinks and 30 percent off sushi.

The restaurant’s hours are Monday though Thursday 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Visit to view the menu. The phone number is 704-638-0888.