Sunday, October 7, 2012

Sustainable Sunday: Here Fishy, Fishy

Sustainably raised Kona Kampachi

My soon-to-be brother-in-law recently returned from another summer fishing for salmon in Alaska. We love having him home and we also love having our freezer stocked with the freshest and most sustainable fish out there.

Being a northwesterner, salmon happens to be my favorite fish. Unfortunately, I don't buy it much because salmon doesn't exactly swim all the way to Hawaii, and I prefer to buy and eat locally raised or caught fish. Which leads us to today's Sustainable Sunday topic, how the heck do we make sustainable fish choices?

The first thing to do is reduce or eliminate our fish intake. I know, I know we gotta get our omega-3s, but these important fats can be found in lots of other foods including flax seeds and olive oil. Keep in mind that most omega-3 supplements are made from fish oils, so be sure to check the label if you are going that route. Scientists are predicting an end of edible ocean dwelling fish by 2050 if current consumption continues, so I'd say it's kinda crucial that we all take eating less fish seriously.

In real life many of us do eat some fish. Hey me too! So let's figure out which fish to bring home that won't contribute to the overfishing problem. In Hawaii, stores must mark the source of their seafood, but if you live in a place where this is not required, get to know the person behind the fish counter, they are most likely full of helpful information. Also, get to know which fish are local to your area, the less the fish has travelled the tastier it will be. Here are some online resources to help you sort it out:

Monterey Bay Aquarium: find seafood recommendations through their search engine, pocket guides, and iPhone apps.

NOAA - FishWatch: everything you ever wanted to know about fish, including farming practices.

NELHA: if you are on the Big Island and haven't gone on the NELHA tour, it is must. Learn all about Hawaii's energy and aquaculture future.

I hope that helps. If you have any other tips, please leave them in the comments below. 

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