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At Eataly, Local Suppliers Are the Key Ingredient

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This story appears in the November 2014 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Just because Eataly’s New York City flagship closes to customers at 11 p.m. doesn’t mean the store shuts down: Its massive bakery oven burns bright 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The wood-burning oven—imported in pieces from Spain and painstakingly reassembled brick-by-brick by Spanish technicians—produces thousands of loaves of fresh bread each day, handcrafted according to Italian tradition with key ingredients like natural yeast and organic stone-ground flour. 

The flour doesn’t come from Italy, however. It originates two hours north of Manhattan in the hamlet of Clinton Corners, N.Y., the site of Wild Hive Farm. The Wild Hive Community Grain Project, founded by Don Lewis to promote sustainable agriculture across the Hudson Valley region, is home to stone milling with granite grinding stones capable of producing flour that perfectly replicates the nutrient-dense, high-quality product indigenous to Eataly’s native Turin. This enables Eataly NYC to offer breads and baked goods that are virtually identical to those sold in the company’s 10 Italian locations. 

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