Anya Fernald is the co-founder and CEO of Belcampo, which employs more than 300 people on its California organic farms; in its butcher shops and restaurants; and at its unique, luxury agritourism destination in Belize.
Fernald developed her expertise in sustainable food and business management with two decades of hands-on experience in high-quality premium foods. After graduating from Wesleyan University, Fernald worked implementing business and marketing plans for small-scale cheesemakers in Sicily for a European Union rural development initiative. She directed a micro-investment program for the Slow Food Foundation in Northern Italy for four years. After returning to her home state of California in 2006, she built two social-venture food businesses (one was sold, the other was a one-time event). She also founded a small advisory firm that developed over two dozen profitable, values-driven food businesses in its three years of activity.
Fernald has been recognized as one of the 40 under 40 by Food & Wine, named a Nifty Fifty by The New York Times, appeared in a profile in The New Yorker’s “Food Issue” in 2014, and served as a judge on Iron Chef America on the Food Network for the 2009, 2010, and 2011 seasons. She was a guest judge on the finale episode of Iron Chef Gauntlet. Fernald also co-authored two books for Slow Food’s international publishing house. Her debut cookbook, Home Cooked, was released in Spring 2016 with Ten Speed Press. Fernald is an avid consumer and producer of almost everything fermented, and spends her spare time with her young children, daughter Viola and son Theo.