We all love a fish supper, in the U.K. alone, a whopping 25 million portions of fish and chips are served each year! However with 85% of global fish stocks now designated as over-exploited and big-fish stocks (tuna/swordfish/cod) plummeting in abundance by 90% since 1950, what can we do to keep fish in our seas and on our plates?
Fish in the sea plus fish on the plate does not have to equal exploitation of the oceans?
It’s a problem all round, well publicised by Hugh’s Fish Fight (www.fishfight.net) that sought to inform us about the problems of over-fishing, our continued over-dependence on the big 3 (tuna/salmon/cod) and the waste of discarded fish. Thanks to incredible public support the EU are now implementing laws to ban discards of dead, edible fish, but with all the bombardment of information available, how can we the consumer, continue to eat fish and feel secure that is has been responsibly sourced?
A large scale fishery (400 tonnes of mackerel caught by purse seine nets in Chile)
I have recently discovered that the new Good Fish Guide is available as an app, which can be downloaded to any mobile phone (with internet or as a leaflet for those without…) and which provides clear advice on which fish species and stocks are best! The app is designed and maintained by the Marine Conservation Society which provides a trusted source of information based on the latest scientific research. Available to download here: http://www.goodfishguide.org/information/Mobile+App
The Good Fish Guide webpages
The app shows all edible fish and shellfish (listed alphabetically) with a short bio on each species and traffic-light style rating of their sustainability, alongside search functions to check your favourites and suggestions for fish currently in season with delicious recipes. I have found it really helpful to swap some old (less-sustainable) favourites for tasty alternatives that are better for our oceans.
Good news for fish, fishermen and us! Fish supper all round please (sustainably sourced pollock that is!)
Fish for tea!
90% decline in big fish stocks story reported by National Geographic
Are we running out of fish? BBC News special
Hugh’s Fish Fight website