We are thrilled to have HEX Ferments stocked on our shelves! The Maryland-based food alchemists are dedicated to sourcing from local and organic farms, and have created strong partnerships with those farms to create unique ferments that support the individuals health, as well as the health of their local foodshed.
Why did you start HEX and how did you get started?
We love food! We love to cook for ourselves and see food as medicine. Our fascination with preservation began separately, but not far from one another. We both grew up in rural areas of the heartland (Shane is from South Dakota and Meaghan from Minnesota), and both families grew their own vegetables, fished and hunted, and put aside food to enjoy in future seasons. Honest and nourishing food, that is also delicious, is practically in our DNA. We became fascinated with fermentation, got married, filled our home with foodie experiments, and in addition to ourselves, began feeding friends and then friends of friends. Quite unexpectedly, a business was born.
Why should everyone eat fermented foods?
To feed your microbiome! Fermentation is the oldest form of food preservation known to humans. Fermented foods are in every culture and for thousands of years have been an effective way to preserve the harvest and make foods more digestible while detoxifying and enhancing nutrients. The effect of fermentation transforms foods to make flavors more complex, while adding naturally occurring probiotics to your diet.
HEX Ferments employs a traditional process – we do not use heat or white vinegar – so that our creations are teeming with beneficial bacteria, healthy acids and enzymes. We balance old world quality and flavor with modern interpretations, and use optimal, nourishing ingredients. Adding fermented foods into your diet is easy: enjoy them with proteins, on salads and sandwiches, with your morning eggs, or straight from the jar. We know that once you incorporate fermented foods into your diet, you’ll be hungry for more (and so will your mind and body!)
What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever gotten?
If you can do it once, you can do it again, but better. And GO WITH YOUR GUT!
If you could start over, what would you do differently?
Absolutely nothing. Building HEX has been an exhilarating ride. From getting licensed (first fermentation and kombucha company in Baltimore!) to all the incredible farmers we have met and all of our supportive customers.
Where did you come up with the name HEX?
HEX comes from Hexology folklore that uses signs and symbols to protect relationships, secure the harvest, and ward off the unwelcome. Similarly, fermented foods protect, support, and shield our immune system, digestion, and overall well-being.
What is your businesses greatest achievement / what is the one thing you’re most proud of?
Small businesses depend on the many small rewards that come from connecting to people. Each day, we’re able to meet new customers, and our local farmers and partners, to talk food, flavor and health. We are proud to be part of a neighborhood, a city, a state, a region, and a country that is remaking the way it eats.
Last fall we brought our friend and mentor Sandor Katz to Baltimore for two days of workshops and gathering. We raised over $1000 for a Baltimore city farm, and were able to expose more people to the art of fermentation and its importance in the re-localization of food. That was pretty damn cool.
What’s next for HEX?
Currently we are working on getting into a larger production facility just down the road from our current location at Belvedere Square Market in Baltimore, MD. We will keep our presence at Belvedere and still continue to make specialty ferments and kombuchas only available at our shop. We are looking forward to bringing in a few fermented surprises and more workshops!