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The Dine-In Revival

A poster in a window at The Pit restaurant features a pointing Uncle Sam with the slogan, "I want you to social distance."
Posters and signs, including one with a pointing Uncle Sam, encourage patrons and passersby at The Pit in Raleigh to maintain social distance.

Stay-at-home guidelines have eased, and many North Carolina restaurants are reopening their dining rooms. In the latest episode of CALS’ Farms, Food and You podcast, guests share insights on COVID-19’s impact on the restaurant industry, what the industry is doing to protect workers and customers, and how you can help keep yourself and your community safe and healthy should you go out.


Download file | Download transcript (PDF) |  RSS feed | Duration: 13m:24s

The Guest List 

Greg HatemGreg Hatem is founder of Empire Properties and its sister company Empire Eats in Raleigh. He grew up in North Carolina and holds an undergraduate degree in chemical engineering from NC State. A passion for old buildings led to his career as a developer, which in turn led him into the restaurant business.


Mike WaldenMike Walden is a William Neal Reynolds Distinguished Professor in NC State’s Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics and perhaps the most well-known economist in North Carolina. He teaches and writes on personal finance, economic outlook and public policy.


Natalie Seymour
Natalie Seymour

Natalie Seymour, also with NC State Extension and the Department of Agricultural and Human Sciences, conducts research and develops ways to prevent and control foodborne illnesses in retail and consumer settings. She holds two NC State degrees, a bachelor’s and a master’s in food science.


Ben Chapman
Ben Chapman

Benjamin Chapman got interested in pathogens and public health as a teenager, after watching the classic cable movie “Outbreak.” As a professor and Extension specialist in NC State’s Department of Agricultural and Human Sciences, Chapman designs and evaluates food safety strategies and messages from farm to fork.




  • Count On Me NC, a public health initiative to empowers guests and businesses to help keep everyone safe from COVID-19. It includes links to training and resources for businesses and consumers.
  • NC State Extension Food Safety, a web portal with myriad resources related to food safety for cooks, consumers, retail establishments, farmers and others.



Farms, Food and You