As one of the state’s largest industries, agriculture is a major economic generator in Maryland. With the holidays quickly approaching, turn to one of our many Maryland farmers for delicious, locally-produced food, wine, and more. Finish planning your Thanksgiving meal with a few suggestions from the Maryland Department of Agriculture.
Thanksgiving is a major moneymaker for local farms, with turkeys being a clear favorite for family dinner tables. The latest data shows that 117 local farms sold more than 150,000 turkeys in 2012. With a variety of farms available across the state, a few feast favorites include Southern Maryland’s Hancock Family Farms in La Plata, and Parkton’s Ferguson Family Farm, which offers all-natural pasture-raised meats.
For something less traditional but purely Maryland, scoop up some healthy, locally-sourced seafood for your holiday meal. According to Maryland Agriculture, oysters, crab, and catfish are readily available throughout the month, courtesy of an estimated 5,500 watermen working along the state’s waterways. Check out these recipes to spice up your upcoming get-together.
Dairy farms and desserts
From cheese to ice cream, Maryland’s dairy farms sell plenty of items directly to consumers. Buy a locally-made artisan sheep cheese from New Windsor’s Shepherds Manor Creamery for an appetizer or a cheese tray. Find a delectable dairy dessert or freshly-baked pie from Middletown’s South Mountain Creamery. For additional options, check the Maryland’s Best guide for other dairy farms in your region.
Quench your thirst
With more than 160 craft beverage businesses in the state, there’s something to satisfy each and every craving in Maryland. With more than 70 wineries in Maryland, every county has a vineyard, giving the state nearly 1,000 acres of grape growing goodness. Don’t forget – Thanksgiving also falls within Maryland Spirits Month, making it the perfect time to celebrate our dozens of distilleries.
Don’t forget to show us how you incorporate Maryland-made products this Thanksgiving with #BuyLocalMD.