Getting Back to Local: Your Fishermen & Seafood

Getting Back to Local: Your Fishermen & Seafood


 NOAA Fisheries Getting Back to Local – Your Fishermen & Seafood Seafood paella with scallops, mussels and octopus simmered in saffron rice. Local fish with black venus rice, bok choy and chile butter sauce. Two succulent seafood dishes on the menu at Black Trumpet in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Chef Evan Mallett’s philosophy for his bistro is simple: source the highest quality, local and sustainable ingredients. I’m always driven to get back toward the source and to understand where food comes from. Really in the last three or four years, I’ve made a concerted effort to know my fishermen as well as I’ve gotten to know my farmers. It is imperative that we start supporting our local fishermen, which the idea of the local family or even in some cases single individual fishermen is one of the keys to the perpetuation of this idea of promoting local seafood and this idea of having a more diverse catch. More and more people are starting to appreciate that there are other species of fish than those which they grew up with. For his bistro, Evan also purchases local, farmed fish through a New Hampshire Sea Grant project where researchers and fishermen farm steelhead trout, mussels, and sugar kelp together. This has been a great boon for us. Now with the aquaculture program we have so many opportunities to put food from there right on the plate and that program through NH Sea Grant has helped us look at things like aquaculture as maybe one of the most promising futures that we have for seafood in our area. The livelihood of the community is definitely dependent upon the fisheries around here. Here at Waterfront Grill our menu is made up of about 90 percent of seafood. That is a huge portion of our purchasing, of our sales, of what we are. I mean that’s essentially our culture. We get a lot of the local fishermen that come in here. To have those relationships with them and be able to talk to them about the best product coming in and top of the catch and getting all of those great quality products in makes a huge impact on what we’re able to serve. Start asking questions of your restaurants that you’re going to and your fishmongers and your supermarket fish counters. There are certainly organizations that you can look up and there are certain fishmongers who are known to make a more concerted effort to work with those local boats and once you establish that connection then you develop trust and you develop traceability and all these great buzzwords now in the industry. Ultimately what it brings is security and satisfaction in knowing where your food is coming from. Supporting your local fishermen provides fresh fish for healthier, tastier seafood and sustains local fishing communities. Choose local. Choose sustainable. and visit FishWatch.gov to learn more about your seafood. NOAA Fisheries www.fisheries.noaa.gov Credit Roll

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