How Was Your Food Grown?

Our good food community is beautifully diverse! 

We focus on food that was made or grown responsibly, with low or no pesticides, utilizing eco-friendly and ethical practices. We also try to balance this ethos with price points to match all our customers' needs. 

This list gives you an idea of the different types of growing and making practices used by our partners. 

Want to learn about a specific product?

Each listing in our online store is paired with a list of "Protocols." This list covers where and how the food was made, as well as any important dietary notes.

At market?

Just ask any of our friendly market associates! We try to label each item on the table, but we're always thrilled to chat about local food, how it's made, and how it moves!

  • Dairy Free

    Made without dairy ingredients
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  • Direct Ingredient Sourcing

    This refers to a locally produced value added product for which our partner sources their main ingredients directly from other farmers or co-operatives.
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  • From the Chesapeake Foodshed

    We use this term to refer items that are grown and made within the Chesapeake Foodshed, a geographical area with borders marked by the watershed which defines so much of agriculture.
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  • Grass fed

    When we use the term "grass fed" we mean that the animal lived its whole life eating grass or hay, on pasture whenever possible. This is also referred to as "grass finished" or "100% grass fed," since the original term is often co-opted and used by operations who feed livestock grass at the beginning of their life, but then fatten the animal for slaughter on a grain diet. "Grass fed" is a more specific way of classifying cattle that are pasture raised or free range.

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  • Grown Using organic Practices

    (with the "little o") we use this term when we talk about farms who may use all or majority organic habits, but are not certified by the USDA. Often, the certification process is financially and logistically difficult for small farms. These farms typically use organic seed (if you want to know which of our partners use certified organic seed in particular, just ask!), follow organic guidelines against GMOs, synthetic fertilizers, and pesticides. We encourage you to explore the practices of any of our partners. They're proud of how they raise your food, and so are we! We're happy to help facilitate this relationship in any way you need.

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  • Hydroponic

    Hydroponic crops are grown indoors, often in greenhouses, using a nutrient rich growing medium (rather than soil) and water.

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  • Integrated Pest Management (IPM)

    an ecosystem-based strategy for reducing pest harm to plants. Rather than using synthetic chemicals, farmers may use biological controls, predator insects, companion planting, habitat manipulation, and changing of their own daily habits to dissuade pests. You can read more about IPM in Dr. Kulveen Virdee's guest blog post here.

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  • Locally Grown

    We use the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, Real Food Challenge, and health Care Without Harm definition of locally grown: raised within 250 miles of our delivery area.

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  • Locally Produced

    We use the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, Real Food Challenge, and health Care Without Harm definition of locally produced: made within 250 miles of our delivery area. These items are made by our good food partners, who try to source locally and organically as much as possible.

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  • Maryland Grown/Made

    This denotes items that are grown or produced within the state of Maryland.
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  • Non- GMO

    Non- Genetically Modified Organism. GMOs are novel organisms created in a laboratory using genetic modification/engineering techniques. When we use the term "non- GMO" we're talking about a food product that doesn't contain any GMO ingredients, an animal that wasn't fed GMO feed, an egg from a chicken which wasn't fed any GMO feed, or produce which doesn't originate from a GMO seed.

    Certified Organic products are always non-GMO.

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  • Pasture Raised

    Animals raised with the ability to freely roam (within reason) on farms. We believe this is the most comfortable and natural setting for animals to be raised. This term is not regulated by the USDA. When we use it, we mean that the animals spend the majority of their time outside on pasture and have access to shelter from predators and bad weather. We source meat and eggs from farms where the animals have plenty of room to move around each other in their pastures and shelters and are not stressed from overcrowding or the condition of their living areas.

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  • Pescatarian

    Made with fish, but no other meat
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  • Soy Free

    We most often use this term in reference to meat animals that weren't fed any soy products or eggs coming from chickens who weren't fed any soy products. 

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  • Sustainably Wild Caught

    Seafood that has been caught in its natural habitat while maintaining the balance of the ecosystem. This is gentler on the environment than farmed fish, which produces large amounts of waste in a concentrated area and often mandates the application of synthetic chemicals, antibiotics, and grain based feed.

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  • USDA Organic/ Certified Organic

    products made in keeping with federal organic guidelines after obtaining federal certification of growing or production methods. Certified organic growing prohibits the use of GMOs and most synthetic fertilizers and pesticides. When meat is certified organic, that means that the animals were raised in conditions that encourage their natural habits, ate only certified organic food, and were not given any antibiotics or hormones.

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  • Vegan

    Made without animal products.
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  • Vegetarian

    Made without meat
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