Fall harvest brings fresh produce to Columbia
COLUMBIA – Fall is here and Columbia food markets have welcomed fresh seasonal produce from a successful harvest.
The Orr Street Farmers and Artisans Market featured multiple stands showcasing fresh seasonal vegetables including a variety of squash, cherry tomatoes, corn and pumpkin. Deanna Peak, co-owner of West Fork Poultry and Produce, reflected on what was a great season for some of her produce.
“This has been one of the better years that we’ve had in quite a while,” Peak said. “It has dried out quite a bit. The fall has been really dry, but, even so, we’ve still had a really good harvest.”
Dry weather was a concern facing harvest in the area for the first half of September. Nevertheless, Peak harvested a fresh crop she is now bringing back to the Columbia community.
“You can see, right here, what things look like when they are harvested fresh,” Peak said. “You have the benefit of [the produce] being harvested within the last week.”
Local community members also don’t mind fresh produce after a great fall harvest. Ashlee Czapla, a Columbia resident and food market visitor, loves the availability of healthy, locally grown and seasonal food options close by.
“Farmer’s market in Columbia is really great for local produce,” Czapla said. “It’s great year around to get fresh local produce, but, today, I definitely came to get pumpkins so, seasonally, it’s a great time to come in the fall.”
Though seasonal harvests are typically quite popular among local consumers, Peak says harvests are always happening, which gives her a great opportunity to do what she loves.
“Bringing [produce] to the market is my favorite just because I get to talk to people and educate,” Peak said. “People can come here and get things fresh, they can see the people that produced it in a lot of cases and, also, they can be educated on what [the vegetable] is and how to cook it.”
The Orr Street Farmers and Artisans Market is open from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Sundays until Oct. 29.