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Our Philosophy

We endeavor to provide our customers with fresh fish and shellfish that has been sustainably sourced, with an emphasis on products from regional fisheries. We carefully consider the status of wild fisheries based on information from a variety of organizations and government bodies, including NOAA's National Marine Fisheries Service, the Blue Ocean Institute, Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) and the Monterey Bay Aquarium's Seafood Watch.

We hope to enjoy wild seafood, support wild fisheries, and ensure the health of our oceans, lakes, and rivers forever. We believe that supporting well-managed aquaculture and sustainably harvested farmed fish is the best way to meet ever-growing demand for fresh seafood, easing the strain on wild populations and ensuring a sustainable future.

Aquaculture is the fish of the future.

A woman wearing a rubber apron holding an octopus, wearing a black hat and t-shirt that say, "The District Fishwife".

Who We Are

The District Fishwife is a family-owned small business operated by partners Fiona Lewis and Ben Friedman, who have lived together in the Washington, DC area since 2009. Fiona and Ben share a passion for all things aquatic and a commitment to promoting healthy and abundant oceans for future generations.


Fiona’s upbringing in Australia was marked by her family’s passion for fishing, seafood, and conservation of local fish species in her native state of Victoria. Prior to moving to the United States, Fiona was a seasoned hospitality professional working in both casual and fine-dining establishments in Melbourne and Sydney, Australia. Fiona Lewis is the founder and co-owner of three businesses in DC’s Union Market:  The District Fishwife, On Toast, and Son of a Fish. She is a nationally recognized expert on sustainable seafood, conservation of local fish species and an advocate for regional fisheries. Originally from Australia, Fiona has worked around the world – including Myanmar, Afghanistan and Vietnam. She is a recipient of the James Beard Foundation’s Women in Entrepreneurial Leadership Fellowship and a co-founder of the Women in DC Food mentorship and advocacy group. 

A family of mother, son, and father seated in front of a metal roll-up door painted with a colorful mural.

Ben’s interest in conservation and environmental sustainability began early when he took responsibility for managing his school’s recycling program and actively supporting causes related to ocean conservation. Since then, Ben traveled and worked around the world to develop sustainable food systems and enterprises in agriculture, fisheries, and aquaculture.

Fiona and Ben met in Afghanistan and now live in Greenbelt, Maryland with their son Max, Afghan cat named Brother and dog Rose.

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