Local Growth: SMHS alum Brown brings healthy options to the table

0
157

Alec Brown helps bring healthy food options to the community and our schools. Brown, a 2011 Starr’s Mill High grad, is the general manager and chief operating officer of Alo Farms where they have created a natural living ecosystem indoors to raise fish and grow produce.

Brown’s father founded, designed, and engineered the farm about 15 year ago, and he jokes that they’ve been growing successfully for 8 years. Joining the family farm was a drastic change of direction for Brown. He studied exercise physiology in college and was a coach for almost a decade, including in strength and conditioning for multiple colleges.

When COVID-19 shut down most college sports, it seemed the right time for a change. He was on the ground floor as they built up the new farm location, and he help put many pieces of the interconnected building together.

“It gave me an amazing understanding for how everything operates and works together.”

He sees a lot of similarities in his time focusing on exercise and physiology and now in farming. It’s all about growth, health, and wellness.

“In many ways, I see a beautiful connection.”

About 5 years ago, Alo Farms started offering STEM field trips and internships where students study the different sciences vital to the farm, including horticulture, agriculture, technology, HVAC, and electrical.

“We want to be invested in reinvigorating the youth and revitalizing the youth in agriculture,” said Brown.

It’s been thrilling bringing it full circle, educating students on the processes, then bringing it to their table. Butter mix and romaine lettuce from Alo Farms are used in School Nutrition Program lunches, and they hope to expand to more options soon.

“We get to be a part of everyone’s table in some way. It’s an honor to do that and see community and relationships come together.”

For more information on Alo Farms, go to www.alofarms.com.

“The Honor Role,” an official podcast for Fayette County Public Schools, features employees, rotating through key stakeholders, including teachers, staff, nurses, custodians, cafeteria workers, and bus drivers. Join us as we dive in and learn about their journeys, their inspirations, and their whys.

Episodes are available on all major podcast platforms, including Spotify and Apple Podcasts, and promoted on the social media channels of Fayette County Public Schools.

Episodes will also be available here: https://www.buzzsprout.com/2200811.