Pete Mairs, owner of local seafood distribution company Barbary Fish Co., recently leased 1124 N. Fourth St. at the edge of the Brooklyn Arts District.
The building will be the new distribution center for Barbary Fish Co. as well as Mairs’ first retail venture, Fathom & Farm.
Mairs has been in the seafood industry for 35 years, and after falling in love with the Asheville area a few years back, he began selling his seafood at Asheville farmers markets and distributing to restaurants throughout the area. Over time, he connected with a wide range of farmers and artisans raising and selling everything from bison and elk to fresh and preserved produce, seasonings and marinades. It struck him that there was limited access to many of these products in Wilmington, and the idea for Fathom & Farm was born.
Fathom & Farm will carry a wide variety of seafood, from local waters and beyond. Customers can expect everything from spots, crab and croaker, to up to 10 different types of oysters, lobster, swordfish and tuna. Mairs will also carry Berkshire-Duroc pork, bison, elk, venison, veal and chicken from western North Carolina farms.
Mairs is only licensed to process seafood, so the meats and poultry will be processed at their origin sites and brought in fresh twice a week.
“I realized I needed to get these products in the hands of other foodies like myself here in Wilmington,” Mairs said. “They’re outstanding quality meats, which we currently have very little access to.”
Mairs said he sees Fathom & Farm as a high-end neighborhood market that will serve as a destination for foodies and also a market that is walkable for many in the growing residential areas of downtown and the riverfront. He said he hopes the concept will evolve over time based upon customer feedback and the availability of new products.
“This is truly a farm-to-table retail concept where fresh produce, seafood and meats will be available any day of the week,” Mairs said.
Fathom & Farm is in the final stages of construction; a mid-November opening is anticipated.