The Harvest Market, located in the Spotsylvania Courthouse Village is a dream realized by Spotsylvania residents Tamis and Matthew Davis. This couple has had a longtime interest in feeding their family healthy, organic, locally grown foods. After the announcement of the closing of Ukrops, the family was left not knowing where to purchase some of their favorite staples, including organic produce. The couple was involved in home construction at the time, but came up with the idea of starting their own market where families like them who were looking for healthy alternatives could shop. Then tragically, Tamis' father died at the age of 56 of obesity-related complications. According to Tamis, her father's death only strengthened their resolve to open a market that would offer healthy local foods to their community.
When I visited the Market, I was invited to the back stockroom area to talk with Tamis and Matthew about their new Market, which opened in March of this year. Tamis was feeding her infant, Madeline some vegetable soup (the couple also has a eleven and four-year old). She asked me to try a wheat roll sample from a local baker whose goods they were beginning to sell. The roll was delicious, and as I talked to them I began to see that the Harvest Market was more than a business for this family, it was a LIFESTYLE.
The Davis family is very selective about what ingredients are in the foods they sell-no high fructose corn syrup, no artificial sweeteners, no MSG, and no trans fats. They say they do not sell anything they would not feed to their own family. They also try to sell as many local items as possible. Not only is the produce local, but other food items like honey, baked goods, and meats come from local farms and suppliers.
I was surprised when Matthew showed me a jar of honey that comes from a farm I can see from my backyard in Spotsylvania! They say that they get to know the farmers and try to learn their farming methods as well. For instance, the beef they offer comes from Dragonfly Farms (in Beaver Dam), and is grass-fed, hormone-free, and antibiotic free.
They admit that buying everything locally can be difficult, so they offer other produce items like organic pineapples and produce out of season in Virginia. However, if an item is produced locally, they try to support it.
Their bulk section is generous with offerings like flaxseeds, nuts, grains, and lentils sold by weight. A section of gluten-free products is more extensive than many traditional groceries. They even have personal care items and products for pets.
For parents looking to get away from feeding their kids highly processed, artificial ingredients this market offers some really great options. They have a kids' section with snacks and prepackaged meals, both boxed and frozen. For those with gluten sensitivity and food allergies there are also some interesting products. The couple is now offering lunch fare like salads, soups and sandwiches and has plans for cooking classes in the future.
As a pediatrician who tries to educate families on the importance of feeding children nutritious foods, I am excited to have this business join our community. To find out more, visit their website. For more ideas on feeding kids nutritious foods visit my website, Doctor Yum.