By Greg Bowen, Executive Director
This little green peninsula known as Calvert County is emerging as a local food paradise and summer is the time to experience it. Sweet corn, tomatoes, peppers, squash and berries are in! There is also local beef, pork, and poultry from the land and seafood from the Patuxent River and Chesapeake Bay. And oh my, the food is fresh and tasty!
The French call it terroir, a term used to describe the environmental factors that affect a crop’s flavor or ‘phenotype’, including unique environment conditions, farming practices and a crop’s specific growth habitat. All together, these characteristics are said to create a unique taste. Drinks or foods that exhibit terroir include coffee, wine, tomatoes, heritage wheat, chilli peppers, and oysters.
Locally sourced foods seemed even more important than just great flavor last year, when store shelves emptied and were not replenished right away. It gave us all a taste of how fragile the global food chain can be in a pandemic or war where ships or planes stop flying-in the huge percentage of food that arrives from outside our nation’s borders. It added to the notion of food insecurity.
Calvert County residents may not appreciate how lucky they are. In addition to farmers markets, roadside stands, and CSAs located throughout the county, we have Chesapeake’s Bounty which aggregates vegetables, meats, and seafood from the Chesapeake Bay region to supply foods still not produced in Calvert, like dairy products, apples, and specialty crops only suited to certain parts of the Chesapeake Bay watershed. Year round, you can find food and drink to meet all of your dietary needs at their two locations: 6415 St Leonard Rd, St Leonard, MD and 9124 Bay Ave, North Beach.
Chesapeake’s Bounty and Swann Farms are just two examples from the wide variety of local foods available in Calvert County. You can find nearly unlimited options for purchasing local foods on the County’s website here: https://www.calvertag.com/
Our ongoing event, Passport to Preservation, is a great way to “buy local”! Get your passport by registering here, get it stamped at one of the eight participating wineries and breweries, and enjoy discounts and the chance to win great prizes – all while supporting local agricultural-based businesses!