By Debbie Smith
I recently visited with Andy Oller, owner, at the Madison Produce Co., and we talked about his journey to owning a business in Madison.
Andy has been a purveyor of produce since he started working for Kroger when he was 16. After a 17-year career with that grocery chain he went to work for a wholesale distributor of plants and flowers headquartered in Half Moon Bay, Calif. His territory was the Midwest and his clients were many grocery chains and Home Depots, all the while still living in Conyers where he had lived since 1969. He then found work closer to home at the Atlanta Farmers Market and continued to work full time there, even after opening The Madison Produce Co. in 2010.
Andy credits his father with making the business grow by working in the store until Andy could leave his other job and take over the day-to-day operation of the business several months later.
His answer to ‘What brought you to Madison’ is a familiar story. “We have friends that live here and we always loved the town and thought it would be a great place to start a business of our own,” said Andy.
Now the Ollers have made the move to Madison in the past year, relocated the business in 2012 to the old Antique Sweets location and started the deli in 2013.
Along with the freshest regional produce, you can also buy Boar’s Head meats and cheeses right in downtown Madison.
Andy is the only retailer of Boar’s Head products in Morgan County. He can put together some of the best deli sandwiches anywhere, making them with his in-store produce and breads, baked just up the road at Luna Baking Co. in Athens.
He carries many great products produced right here in Georgia, such as olive oil from Georgia Olive Farm, Dog Days BBQ sauce, and jams, jellies and ciders from Orchard Farms. The list goes on to deep fried peanuts from Plains, grits, muffin and pancake mixes from Helen, and gourmet nuts, candies and gifts from The Orchards.
Our own Morgan County’s Verner Meats complete a list of all the groceries you’ll need right in one location. I love the Amish butter and you can pick up a gallon of milk from a local dairy. So come for the tastiest and freshest sandwiches for lunch, pick up a delicious Georgia made gift, and take home dinner for the evening!