Ames talks health eating habits at Rotary meeting

Published 5:37 pm Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Do you know where the fruits and vegetables you buy at the supermarket come from? Are they even grown in the U.S.A.? Are they fresh and flavorful?

It is now possible to purchase locally grown, certified organic produce weekly and pick it up from specified distribution centers in Bainbridge, Cairo, Thomasville and Albany, as well as Tallahassee and Havana.

Marla Ames, one of the owners of Harvest Moon Market LLC, a local family owned business, came to Rotary Tuesday to promote healthier eating habits while informing members about a new option for obtaining fresh fruits and vegetables.

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Most are familiar with the Harvest Moon Market the Ames family opened on Route 84 across from the Bainbridge High School in 2010.

There they sold the fresh fruits, vegetables and locally grown produce from their family farm. The Ames family is comprised of Robert and Marla Ames, his sister, Nancy Brooks and now includes daughter Katie and son-in-law Bryan McClellan, owners of McClellan Organics LLC who are operate their 350 acre USDA certified organic farm near Climax.

The group is actively participating in Community Supported Agriculture (CSA), which allows people to enjoy a wide variety of seasonal fruits and vegetables.

The way it works, a family signs up for a weekly box of assorted produce that comes in three sizes (bushel, l/2 bushel or ΒΌ bushel) designed to fit family size.

The application cites a four-week membership; however, Ames said orders can stop or start any time. Members receive emails weekly advising what the assortment will be in the boxes each week.

Asked about price comparisons, Ames replied that it is possible to go on line and compare the prices of other markets, such as Whole Foods, against those of the CSA and theirs beat the others every time.

Farmers growing organic produce in order to be certified must adhere to U.S.D.A. standards, using no pesticides and following prescribed crop rotation. There are also regular inspections.

The market on 84 closed last fall and Ames said it will remain closed for now as they are focusing their time and products to the CSA.