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March 3, 2108 Market Newsletter

We are now open to accept orders.
Orders close Tuesday at 5pm

This Week’s Newsletter:
March Healthy Lifestyle Class
Organic or Not???
In Season
Grower Notes


Inquiring Minds (albeit small) Want to Know!

All joking aside, we hope you have your calendar marked for Saturday, March 17. At 10 am Market At Dothan and Dothan Nurseries will host our 3rd Healthy Lifestyle Class for this year. Many of you know Rachel Hawkins, if not in person than by name (and her beautiful heart as she is a regular contributor to this newesletter). This is a two for one deal! Rachel will be joined by husband Brandon to demonstrate one of those great culinary skills that is being lost to our instant/microwave/fast food on demand culture – how to cut up a whole chicken.

Of course those of us who took home-economics in the 1800’s know how to do this. Back then we learned how to butcher and clean them beforehand too. As our country’s food systems have become more industrialized however, our younger generations think that chicken nuggets sprout from seed inside fast food restaurants and buffalo wings are from a mixed breed. Oh yeah, eggs fit in there somewhere but nobody’s really sure about how that works.

If you are one of those suffering from not knowing what to do with a whole chicken we are here for you! Rachel and Brandon are experts in both raising and preparing organic chicken and can show you the path to both cutting up and changing your diet to healthy chicken dishes. Don’t be fooled by imitations. Hawkins Homestead is the real deal and the Hawkins family are trusted and true. You don’t have to come alone. Bring a friend and do your part to help end this sad era in our food culture.


With all the beautiful new produce being listed recently we’ve been questioned about why some is listed as “organic” and others, from equally reputable farmers, is not. The quick answer is simple, and the complete answer is more complex.

So – simple answer first! It has to do with finances. USDA allows small farms that make less than $5000 a year to use the word ‘organic’. The upside of this is that small farms have an advantage. The downside is that there’s no regulation and any small farm can claim ‘organic’ whether they actually are or not. This is why we encourage our consumers to educate themselves to ask the right questions! (See last week’s Weblog Newsletter about Greenwashing.).

Large or small, the integrity of the farmer determines the integrity of the food.

And that tells you something about the ones who don’t say “organic” doesn’t it? It’s true – farms that devote more time and energy to superior production are actually disadvantaged for doing a fabulous job. USDA sees it as a safeguard to prevent unscrupulous growers from taking advantage of consumers, but for those with integrity it is a bitter reality as they are expected to pay for certification (not cheap!) if they make a penny over $5000.

Please know that while Market At Dothan is not a certification agency, we do screen our growers about their philosophies and practices. Every grower who sells through Market At Dothan fills out an application form that requires information about how their farm products are grown. We’ve been out to a farm or two, or three . . . . and have seen for ourselves what takes place there. Not every farm makes the cut.

This is why we encourage you to learn about sustainable food practices and get to know our growers for yourself. And if you’re willing to muddle through the history and politics of organic agriculture the EcoTipping Points Project is an excellent, albeit long read.


EGGS! We’re so thankful that everyone’s chickens are responding to the longer days and warmer temperatures. Rather than share a bunch of recipes with you this week we thought you may enjoy this excellent article on the health benefits of eating eggs. Just click the link below the photo.

Fifteen Things That Happen to Your Body When You Eat Eggs


We have the best Growers in the Wiregrass! Please learn more about them on our Grower Page.

AVALON FARMS: After a quick trip to the Huntsville area for a Produce Safety Certification class (more on that later) and of course a shopping trip to Unclaimed Baggage (If you like thrift stores you will love this place! we returned home to discover Spring has well and truly sprung.

In the above photos you will notice several spring happenings on the farm. The lovely white blossoms, across the top, are my favorite old sand pear tree blooming its fool head off.

Not so lovely is the fall planted cabbage that these warm temps have coerced into blooming. When things in the cabbage family bloom, it’s a bad thing for eating quality. This is what people are referring to when they say the cabbage “ran up” or “went to seed”. Pretty much it will flower, make seed and die. No bueno for dinner.

Lastly, but cutest, we have new twin baby goats. They were a surprise arrival early Friday morning. It is fun to go out to the pasture and discover new babies!! That puts us up to 15 goats total, 7 babies.

BAIN HOME GARDENS: Since we last blogged there have been many developments. For one, we planted potatoes! This is a first for Bain Home Gardens. We talked with Wendy of Avalon Farms, Vicki of Richter Farms, Kathy of Kathy’s Churpers, & Roslyn of Horton farms. We feel like their sage advice, along with loads of other research, will help us get the bumper crop everyone hopes for!

So are you ready for our next tip to manage allergy symptoms? It is simple but boy is it hard to do. DO NOT RIDE WITH YOUR WINDOWS DOWN! (Gasp!) I know it sounds ridiculously silly, however when you get into your vehicles, you SEE it hanging out on the windshield beckoning to be let in. If yours is like our van, the pollen has already infiltrated & decorated your dash! Yes, the weather may be a perfect 72° & it may be gorgeous out but fight the urge to roll the window down or open the sunroof. The high speeds & wind create a dangerous cocktail! This will mean high exposure for some, especially if you spend much time in your vehicle. Smiling one minute, sneezing the next!  It is a good practice to wipe down dashes and seats regularly with some car wipes. This will further limit prolonged exposure. We hope this tip helps you to stay well this allergy season.
From our family to yours – take care!

HAWKINS HOMESTEAD FARM: Hello Market Friends! Hoping you guys have enjoyed the weather as much as we have! With that being said though, temperatures are set to drop and we are in store for some cold nights. Do you have plants outside already? Well, there are a few things you can do to protect them. If you have seedling trays, simply bring them in. If something has already been planted in your garden, cover it up by using an old sheet or even a few empty pots you may have laying around the house. By covering it, you are providing the plant and the soil the extra bit of heat that it may need. Just remember to use a large enough pot to cover the plant without damaging it and to remove the pot and the covering in the morning as temperatures rise. March 15th is our official last frost date! That means that all danger of frost has passed and you can begin to set your plants outside. Just remember to “harden” them off first. We shared a great article about this on the Market Discussion Page. See you next week!


We would love to hear from you! If you have a favorite recipe, want to write a product review, have an idea or request for an article or information, let us know! You can reply to this newsletter or write

Market Schedule
Order Saturday 5pm to Tuesday 5pm weekly for Pickup the following Friday
Dothan Pickup: Dothan Nurseries, 1300 Montgomery Highway, Dothan, AL 36303
Daleville Pickup: Daleville Chamber of Commerce Office

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We thank you for your interest and support of our efforts to bring you the healthiest, the freshest and the most delicious locally-produced foods possible!