New Ideas, New Markets, New Insights
All around the country, Americans are dreaming big. Their boldest ideas are changing their communities—and having a ripple effect throughout the world.
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AgLocal, Prairie Village, Kansas
AgLocal cofounder Naithan Jones uses the word carnivore casually and often. That's with good reason since carnivores are the target audience of his new startup, AgLocal, which aims to connect meat eaters with meat producers. For farmers, "it's not efficient to run up and down the road to a farmers' market," Jones says, "and you lose control of margins when you go large-scale." AgLocal, which plans to launch this summer, hopes to use mobile technology to address those market failures, becoming a digital middleman and linking consumers directly to producers. Say you live in Kansas City and love grass-fed beef; AgLocal will connect you with nearby sources such as Mettenburg Farm (where Jones, above left, and company cofounder Jacob McDaniel were photographed). AgLocal has already signed up more than 100 farms around the country, including many small, family-run operations relieved that the digital revolution has finally come to them. "When we go out to meet with farmers," Jones says, "there's inevitably an emotional moment when they tell us how glad they are that technology isn't leaving them behind."
A version of this article appeared in the May 2012 issue of Fast Company magazine.