Read about environmental sustainability and current events affecting the seafood industry.
The festival will be an educational event as well. Many fishing related organizations from around New England will be on hand, eager to interact and share their knowledge with festival attendees. Some of the organizations are: Ocean Trust, the Blue Water Fishermen’s Association, Gloucester Fishermen’s Wives Association, Saving Seafood, Laura Hartung, local Registered Dietitian, and many other organizations from all the fishing ports of Massachusetts and New England.
www.fishwatch.gov An excellent resource for seafood and sustainability facts
www.savingseafood.org Saving Seafood
www.oceantrust.org Ocean Trust
www.bwfa-usa.org Blue Water Fishermen’s Association
www.laurahartungrd.com Featured Nutritionist, Laura Hartung, MA, RD
www.massoyster.org Massachusetts Oyster Project
Seafood’s Positive Role in the Economy
Have you ever wondered how commercial fishing affects the economy? To sum it up from an economic report released by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), “The report documents clearly that managing fisheries sustainably is good for the environment and the economy,” said Jim Balsiger, NOAA acting assistant administrator for NOAA’s Fisheries Service. “Fishing helps create a substantial number of jobs around the nation.”
How many people have jobs in the commercial fishing industry? These are reports from the states that generate the highest amount of sales:
“The report also breaks down the sales, income and job figures for each coastal state. The highest amount of sales generated by the commercial fishing industry were in California ($9.8 billion), Florida ($5.2 billion), Massachusetts ($4.4 billion), Washington ($3.8 billion), and Alaska ($3 billion). The most jobs were generated in California (179,000), Florida (103,000), Massachusetts (83,000), Washington (75,000) and Texas (47,000). ”
But wait, is NOAA saying that fishermen alone generate this kind of income? No way! So many others are involved in commercial fishing! “The commercial fishing industry — harvesters, seafood processors and dealers, seafood wholesalers and seafood retailers — generated $103 billion in sales, $44 billion in income and supported 1.5 million jobs in 2006.”
Now that’s my kind of economy! An industry that should be supported, no doubt!
“The Three P’s of Sustainability
Many people typically talk about sustainable seafood in relation to the environment; for example, whether or not a fish population is being depleted or if a fishery has any impact on other animals or ocean habitats. Ensuring the long-term health of the environment is a major part of the conversation, but it’s not the full story. Supporting the communities and economies that depend on the environment is an important aspect of sustainable seafood, too.
The Magnuson-Stevens Act, the main law driving fishery conservation and management in the United States, requires that U.S. fisheries meet 10 national standards of sustainability. These standards work to sustain not only our fishery resources (fish and shellfish) and the ecosystems in which they live (habitat and other marine animals) but also the people that depend upon these resources (commercial and recreational fishing industries and coastal communities).
So while our fishery scientists and managers are continuously working to rebuild depleted fish populations and maintain healthy ones, protect vulnerable ocean life, and protect and restore coastal and marine habitat, they’re also working to improve our management approaches to better meet the needs of fishermen and coastal communities. This means making sure fishermen are safe and fisheries operate efficiently and profitably, along with minimizing their impact on the environment.
Remember, to sustainably manage a fishery, you must balance the three P’s—people, profit, and planet. Simultaneously protecting the red king crab population and the lives and livelihoods of the crab fishermen has been a win-win—and it’s what sustainable seafood is all about.
CNN Money‘s “‘Deadliest Catch’ not so deadly anymore” , 7.27.12″
Sustainable seafood is a hot topic these days. “Sustainability” is based on a simple principle – meeting today’s needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs; for example, using a resource but leaving some for the future. In terms of seafood, this means catching or farming seafood responsibly, with consideration for the long-term health of the environment and the livelihoods of the people that depend upon the environment. For example, U.S. seafood is wild-caught and farm-raised under strict regulations that work to keep the environment healthy, fish populations thriving, and our seafood industry on the job.
Choosing sustainable seafood can be challenging – how do you know the seafood at the market or on your menu came from sustainable sources? LEARN MORE about the seafood guides and ecolabels that have recently emerged to assist people with purchasing sustainable seafood, as well as a few general tips for making smart seafood choices.”
Health Benefits of Seafood
“Research over the past few decades has shown that the nutrients and minerals in seafood can make improvements in brain development and reproduction and has highlighted the role for seafood in the functionality of the human body.
Doctors have known of strong links between fish and healthy hearts ever since they noticed that fish-eating Inuit populations in the Arctic had low levels of heart disease. One study has suggested that adding one portion of fish a week to your diet can cut your chances of suffering a heart attack by half. Fish is thought to protect the heart because eating less saturated fat and more Omega-3 can help to lower the amount of cholesterol and triglycerides in the blood – two fats that, in excess, increase the risk of heart disease. Omega-3 fats also have natural built-in anti-oxidants, which are thought to stop the thickening and damaging of artery walls. Regularly eating fish oils is also thought to reduce the risk of arrhythmia – irregular electrical activity in the heart, which increases the risk of sudden heart attacks.
10-12% of the human brain is composed of lipids, including the Omega-3 fat DHA. Recent studies suggest that older people can boost their brain power by eating more oily fish, what with regular consumers being able to remember better and think faster than those who don’t consume at all. Other research has also suggested that adding more DHA to the diet of children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder can reduce their behavioral problems and improve their reading skills, while there have also been links suggested between DHA and better concentration. Separate studies have suggested that older people who eat fish at least once a week could also have a lower chance of developing dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
Including fish as a regular part of a balanced diet has been shown to help the symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis – a painful condition that causes joints to swell up, reducing strength and mobility. Studies also show that sufferers feel less stiff and sore in the morning if they keep their fish oil intake topped up. Recent research has also found a link between Omega-3 fats and a slowing down in the wearing of cartilage that leads to osteoarthritis, opening the door for more research into whether eating more fish could help prevent the disease.
Fish is high in minerals such as zinc, iodine and selenium, which keep the body running smoothly. Iodine is essential for the thyroid gland, which controls growth and metabolism, while selenium is used to make enzymes that protect cell walls from cancer-causing free radicals, and helps prevent DNA damage caused by radiation and some chemicals. Fish is also a source of vitamin A, which is needed for healthy skin and eyes, and vitamin D, which is needed to help the body absorb calcium to strengthen teeth and bones.” – Wikipedia