“Reiding” Up on NC Culture

barbecueAlthough not a North Carolina native, I’ve lived here long enough to know what the people of this state take seriously: pigs, pork and pigskins, for starters. Pig and hog farming are big business in this state, with nearly 2,000 farms employing 13,000 people and selling 34.5 million hogs (2012 statistics). It makes North Carolina the 2nd largest pig producer in the country, after Iowa.

It’s no wonder that barbecue (aka BBQ pork) and barbecue sauces are such an important part of the heritage and a hotly contested source of local pride. There’s even a North Carolina Barbecue Society. There are two main types of Carolina barbecue – Lexington and Eastern-style.

Lexington-style barbecue, more common in the western part of the state, uses a “red” sauce that is seasoned with ketchup, vinegar, pepper and other spices. It is made using only the pork shoulder section of the pig, whereas Eastern-style barbecue uses “every part of the hog except the squeal”. Vinegar and pepper are the key ingredients in Eastern-style sauce, with no tomato whatsoever.

If like our newest Carrier Sales Representative, Reid Setliff, you hail from Greenville, NC, you might do something completely different. You see, Reid Setliff BarbecueGreenville isn’t just home of the ECU Pirates; and it isn’t just Reid’s hometown; it’s also the home of Uncle Yammy’s Grillin Sauce. The sauce first appeared at a Greenville restaurant and then made its way to the local Piggly Wiggly. Today, it’s the sauce of choice for residents all over the South and is sold in thousands of grocery stores. Reid, a grill master in his own right, will tell you that it’s the secret to the perfect grilled chicken.

An avid sportsman and a football fan, Reid proudly supports his alma mater, East Carolina University, as well as the Carolina Panthers. And, he has a great story about how a hometown guy met his Carolina girl. (Hint: matchmaking was involved!)

Desperate to move closer to his sweetheart, Reid conducted a thorough search in our market and dropped his resume off at Matchmaker one day. We weren’t hiring at the time, but when a position opened up a few months later, I remembered him and decided to do a little…ahem…’matchmaking’ of my own. I emailed Reid to tell him about the open position, he applied, and my team started the interview process.

Having previously worked in the Logistics/Packaging Department for a Japanese automotive manufacturer, Reid had the skills, experience and the work ethic we were seeking. He’s delighted to join our more relaxed corporate culture – superheroes and all – and, we’re delighted to have him! Please join me in welcoming Reid Setliff to the Matchmaker Logistics team.

Hum a little James Taylor this weekend –