West Virginia Executive Summer 2014 - Page 96

During the saltmaking process, the brine evaporates in large, shallow beds in one of three sunhouses. “We also feel that if we can play a small part in getting West Virginians cooking and seasoning their own food, we can help make the state healthier.” Virginians cooking and seasoning their own food, we can help make the state healthier.” The salt company is heavily involved with educating customers about the source and process of their organic salt batches because they believe that a healthier community comes from awareness. “Chefs and consumers are becoming increasingly aware of where their food is produced and who is producing it,” Nancy explains. “I felt we had an opportunity to produce an all-natural, sustainably-made product.” The company also works to help its consumers get familiar with its product by utilizing social media to share and find recipes. Their Web site provides a deep history of the family, as well as supplemental products and resources for seasoning shoppers of all varieties. The Web site itself was designed by a local graphic design company, MESH Design and Development, creating a partnership of which J.Q. Dickinson is proud. The relationships they’ve built with other local companies are a testament to how they want the business community to tie together. Gaddy Engineering assisted with the geology of the area, consulted on how deep the well would need to be and worked on the analysis and design of new sun houses. TerraSalis, a landscape design business, owns property and greenhouses that facilitate salt-making, and Allegheny Treenware provided specialized, wooden salt-making tools. Integrating business with community and sustainability is the ultimate goal for Nancy and Lewis. Their salt company, which has come from deep roots in the industry, is their take on revolutionizing a product that provides day-to-day benefits and quality for its consumers. They also strive to make the Mountain State a large part of their efforts. “We think this is a unique time in West Virginia’s business economy,” says Nancy. “We feel we’re tapping into the roots of the industry’s past and modernizing it to provide a product that is meeting the needs of today’s consumer.”  Photography by Tracy Toler 96 west virginia executive