Buying and selling Maryland seafood is easier for the state’s entrepreneurs, small business owners and consumers. There is a new online home for Maryland seafood direct from watermen and aqua-farmers as easy as picking up the phone and placing an order.
The University of Maryland Environmental Finance Center and the Maryland Department of Agriculture are working together to make a berth for local seafood on the Internet – at the University’s virtual farmer’s market, www.Foodtrader.org
A free service to buyers and sellers, Foodtrader.org provides instantaneous listings of fresh foods available only from Maryland farms. The idea is to offer consumers the freshest food at competitive prices by connecting them directly with local farmers and now the fishing industry. Maryland Agriculture Secretary Buddy Hance, says he is thrilled with this new opportunity for producers to reach consumers; “It’s a perfect example of how technology can help our agricultural and seafood industries sell their products directly to consumers,” Hance says.
“I feel like I am doing my part to keep the seafood industry here sustainable,” says Joanne Throwe, director of the University of Maryland Environmental Finance Center and creator of the website. “Buying local should be more than just about fruits and vegetables.”
Signing up for Foodtrader.org is free and acts like a Craig’s List for local foods. Currently, the site is designed for Maryland producers and consumers; as such, anyone outside the state is unable to create an account. Interested, but don’t live in Maryland? Anyone can visit the site, click on listings, and view listing details and producer contact information — that is, buy from anyone listing items for sale.