Jaemor: A Home Away From Home
I grew up in Columbus, Ga. with a lifestyle far away from agriculture. I wasn’t oblivious to the state’s largest industry, but the most active I was in agriculture – other than the dinner table – occurred during the summer when I would stop at Jaemor Farms for peaches / ice cream / boiled peanuts every trip back home from camp.
As I grew older, Jaemor became one of my favorite places, despite it being three hours away from home. My memories here with friends combined with my favorite fruit made Jaemor stand out to me whenever I reminisce on my childhood.
I started at the University of Georgia as a sophomore agricultural communication major – studying an industry, as previously stated, I knew virtually nothing about. The week before classes started, I was so nervous about my next chapter of life, I drove to Jaemor, searching for the feeling of familiarity, and as always, my favorite roadside market didn’t disappoint.
This summer I have had the opportunity to experience behind the scenes at Jaemor as I have served as the family farm’s marketing intern. And yes – tasting the Echols family’s homegrown peaches, homemade ice cream and boiled peanuts is a work perk! I include the Echols family in my job description because this family is the reason my roadside market never disappointed me. From the farm to the market and bakery, this family is involved in every aspect of their farm operation – and I believe it is because of this that Jaemor Farms is so successful today. Without their hard work, dedication and passion for agriculture, the Echols family at Jaemor would not be celebrating their 107th peach season this year.
The Echols family’s dedication and passion is not limited to only agriculture at Jaemor – it expands to their customers. As a clueless teenage customer trying to pick out a good watermelon or cantaloupe to bring back home to her mom (famous for her work in the kitchen), I was lucky enough to have never made those decisions by myself thanks to the countless Jaemor hands willing to help. Now as a summer employee, I notice the same hands reaching out in the form of peach sampling, answering questions in the market or on the phone and even answering to customers on online platforms as well (If you’ve messaged Jaemor on social media this summer, I’ve had the pleasure of chatting with you!). I now understand that Jaemor became one of my favorite places not just because of the memories or ice cream and boiled peanuts, but because the Echols family has created an atmosphere of kindness and patience inside their farm market.
I could not think of a better internship to learn and grow from. I have been lucky to have had the opportunity to continue calling Jaemor a home away from home – even now, as an adult. While one may not share the last name, anyone who has visited or will visit Jaemor will always be a part of this family farm.