Sustainable fishing

Posted by: Ren

Approximately 70% of the earth is covered in ocean waters. According to the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, an astonishing 95% remains largely unexplored.

Our oceans are a source of food, climate regulation, and the center of livelihood for many cultures. However as we progress further into a modern era, where industry, technology, and population are growing at phenomenal rates, our proverbial footprint in the small percentage of water that we have dipped our feet into is actually making huge waves.

Despite the magnificent scope of the ocean, humans are adversely impacting biodiversity and fish populations. Though pollution, tourism, transport, and other ocean-based business have a hand in this deterioration, it is no doubt that ocean fishing and the seafood industry contributes the most harm.

In Tokyo alone, the three major fish markets (including the infamous Tsujiki Fish Market) reel in 700,000 metric tons of seafood every year. If you stop to think about how many natural creatures humans are pulling out of the sea each year, it is downright shocking. In fact, to put it in another perspective. ocean fishing is the only remaining wild hunting practice conducted by humans on a large scale.

So what can you do? This doesn’t mean you should stop eating seafood altogether. Rather, there are many ways to ensure a more sustainable fishing economy. This includes, on an industry level, becoming active in the fight to ensure remaining fisheries improve practices. It includes educating fisherman about overfishing and biodiversity, ensuring illegal and unregulated activities are monitored, habitat and ecosystem damage  regulated, poor management improved, and bycatch (the unwanted species that are accidentally caught in nets of a catch) minimized.

Aquaculture, or fish farming, can also be successfully implanted in the industry. As long as ecological impacts are considered– the species being farmed, where they are raised and the methods they are treated and fed– the fish farm industry can work alongside ocean fishing to provide safe, sustainable, and healthy seafood for the world’s populations.

On the consumer end, simply being more conscious of what is purchased at the seafood counter can help. You won’t be able to single handedly save the fish in the sea, but you’ll be able to make a difference in your lifetime, for the betterment of future generations. After all, as the saying goes–there are many other fish in the sea. We hope that this remains a fact.

South Melbourne Seafoods, located in Stall 4 at the South Melbourne Markets, sources 98% of their stock from Australasian waters, so you know the fish are fresh and the environmental impact is small. With an emphasis on sourcing fish from sustainable fisheries, the catch of the day you get from John and Nick will not only taste great, it can also help you leave a small carbon footprint at the table. Want more info? Check out this article on more sustainable seafood facts.

sustainable seafood

sustainable seafood

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