Posted May 2006
Sustainable Seafood at Monterey
MONTEREY—While salmon might do wonders for your waistline, it’s
not always so great for the environment. According to Seafood
WATCH, run by the Monterey Bay Aquarium, farmed salmon can interfere
and even overwhelm native salmon populations and waste from the
farms can contribute to environmental damage.
better choice, they say, is wild Alaskan salmon caught in fewer
numbers and carefully managed. California and Pacific Northwest
salmon is also a good choice, but there are concerns about the
long-term sustainability of the species due to logging and dams.
(You can read much more here.)
Baffled? Don’t be. Seafood Watch makes it simple to make good
choices with a guide to “best choices”, and keeps an updated
tally of what fish and seafood are sustainably harvested and
humanely caught—basically what you should and shouldn’t be eating
when it comes to keeping the ocean’s bounty safe.
year, to get the word out to chefs and consumers, it will host Cooking
for Solutions on May 19-20. The event features such culinary
big wigs as Sonoma’s John Ash, celebrity chef Rick Bayless, Nancy
Oakes of San Francisco’s Boulevard, as well as a number of others
who will be discussing practical uses of sustainable seafood
and recipes. The event will also feature tours of nearby Earthbound
farms, which uses sustainable and organic methods of farming.
Tickets and pricing information is available on the aquarium’s
why all the fuss? Seafood WATCH was created in the late 1990s
for an exhibit at the aquarium to help consumers understand the
impact they could have on the ocean environment. Environmental
organizations, including the aquarium were discovering that over
fishing in certain areas was having a huge impact on entire ocean
ecosystems. Popular restaurant fish—like swordfish, caviar or
Chilean sea bass were becoming perilously close to becoming endangered,
and the word needed to get out to eaters that these weren't good
choices for the long-term health of the ocean.
giving consumers the information, SeafoodWATCH hopes to let all
of us help in making changes. And it's working: the numbers of
dolphins and other aquatic life being trapped in tuna nets lead
to quick and sweeping changes in how tuna are caught and consumer
labeling, allowing people to know that they are contributing
to the long-term health of the environment and species.
more information on what you can do, go to www.mbayaq.org.