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Farming and brewing works in Lancaster, SC

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On a recent visit to Lancaster County during our annual trek through our state’s Ag and Art tour, we stumbled upon what is purported to be South Carolina’s only production brewery located on a working farm. But what came first, the beer or the beef? Mike Switzer interviews Bryan O’Neal, owner of Benford Brewing in Lancaster, SC.

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After almost 20 years, Mike Switzer retired from Wells Fargo Securities in 2001 as Senior Vice President/Investment Officer and Certified Portfolio Manager. In 1999, he and his wife, Maggie, purchased and operated for eight years the Baskin Robbins ice cream store on Forest Drive in Columbia. They grew the store from a bottom-tier operation in the Baskin Robbins franchise system to one in the top 5% nationwide within three years, tripling sales along the way. While operating the ice cream store, Mike and Maggie received patents for a portable ice cream sink and fold-down sneezeguard they invented and in 2002 started Magnolia Carts, an ice cream cart manufacturing company, which they sold in 2013.