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Sustainable Fish Soundbites

June 12th, 2009 · 5 Comments

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There’s been a lot of press lately about top sushi Chef Nobu Matsuhisa’s refusal to stop serving critically-endangered bluefin tuna in his celebrity-frequented, highly-lauded Nobu restaurants. Greenpeace and those barton seaver food and wine national harborsame celebrities have recently launched a boycott in hopes of forcing a menu change.

Meanwhile, here in the District, sustainable seafood ambassador Barton Seaver has just opened Blue Ridge, where he describes his mission as, “making broccoli sexy so you’ll have less room for the shrimp on your plate.” He’s not out to tell you what not to eat, he says, just as long as you’re not eating more than 4-5 ounces of a sustainably-harvested seafood species at a time.

At last weekend’s Food & Wine Festival at National Harbor, where Seaver gave a cooking demo, I was amused to see the Alaska seafood industry handing out sustainable seafood guides that just happened to be the same size and format as the Seafood Watch guides by the Monterey Bay Aquarium. The difference? The industry-produced brochures assert that environmental contaminants like PCBs that are highly-publicized are not actually a problem in the US. (Really? Then what’s with this new warning about dangerous PCB levels in Atlantic rockfish, eh?) Alaskan seafood is generally one of the more sustainable options, as event speaker Dan Shapley of The Daily Green poinwild natural sustainable fishted out, so it’s unclear why they felt the need to spread misinformation.

Word Oceans Day was earlier this week, but you can still take a moment to sign a message to your legislators asking them to ban mercury-producing chlorine manufacturing processes; yes, the same mercury that gets into our soil, water, and fish…

Making smart seafood choices is complicated enough without having to try to discern which guides are scientific and which are just clever marketing. Here’s a look back at a “Sustainable Seafood 101” post I wrote earlier this year, part of the FoodieTot’s Sustainable Family Supper series. (And my contribution to this week’s Fight Back Friday, hosted by Food Renegade.)

Tags: fish · food for thought

5 responses so far ↓

  • 1 FoodRenegade // Jun 12, 2009 at 11:47 am

    Sustainable seafood has always confused me. Seafood — and lots of it — has always been an integral part of traditional diets. Even inland tribes used to travel to the sea semi-annually to trade for those life-sustaining, fertility-enhancing nutrients only found in large quantities in sea life. So, what am I supposed to do if I am now living inland, have to buy my fish at a supermarket, and can only choose between the handful of varieties they might carry?

    Hard choices, to say the least.

    Thanks for submitting this informative post in today’s Fight Back Fridays carnival. Love it!

    (AKA FoodRenegade)

  • 2 Fight Back Fridays June 12th | Food Renegade // Jun 18, 2009 at 5:12 pm

    […] Lindsay Young ( The Happy Dish): AAEM, Probiotics & GMOs8. Throwback at Trapper Creek9. Sustainable Fish Soundbites (FoodieTots)10. Hugging the Coast (Mayo Free Salads)11. Michelles Health and Food Site (Cacao, Seed & Goji […]

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