Things you need to know about farmed fish

 In Sustainable seafood

When our Journey first began here at Fish & Co we planed our business around supporting the best sustainable seafood practices. For us that means supporting fisheries and fisherman catching wild caught fish by adapting their practices to ensure they do not over-fish by taking only enough fish to maintain a sustainable catch for the following seasons. For each of the fisheries this can mean finding different solutions which you can read on our Sustainable Stories. The outcome for all is the same – Sustainable Fishing for all time.

Our second criteria is that these fisheries don’t just talk Sustainable but are actually held accountable by being certified through organisations like the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). This criteria is then also held for the Fishmongers we deal with like Joto here in Sydney.

As a business and cafe it was important to also be held accountable through the MSC and as such we are Sydney’s first fully Certified restaurant which means whenever you come into our restaurant you are able to trace all our fish back to its origin. From here to the fish mongers to the fisherman and right onto the boat your fish was caught on and the sector of ocean. The distinction here is that we are working to ensure we take only what we need with the minimum impact, ensuring the eco-system can be sustainably managed.

This is more important than ever as today more and more businesses, restaurants and chefs are blurring the distinction of Sustainable Seafood practices by including Farmed Fish. You need to know the truth.

Farmed Fish Now More Popular Than Beef Worldwide

“One billion people eat seafood every day, and it can be sustainable if we manage the oceans well,” Andy Sharpless, the CEO of Oceana, said last night at a book launch party at Azur in Washington, D.C. While guests noshed on sustainably produced lobster beignets, sardine sushi, and raw oysters (pictures), they heard about The Perfect Protein, the new book written by Sharpless and Suzannah Evans.

Speaking of the land, for the first time in modern history, global production of farmed fish (aka aquaculture) has overtaken the production of beef, according to an article from environmental think tank Earth Policy Institute. Credits: Farmed Fish Now More Popular Than Beef Worldwide – Voices

So whats the problem with Farmed Fish?

As you can see this is now the fastest growing food sector in the world, especially through Asia and in particular China. This is a twofold problem as our population continues to grow globally and as our appetite for seafood continues to grow. There is now a lot of evidence exposing and demonstrating that the same issues we have for mass farming on land are also now happening in Fish farming.

US Researchers Examine Antibiotic Content in Farmed Fish

Additionally, many types of farmed fish rely on fishmeal produced from by-catch caught in fishing nets. Several pounds of fishmeal are often required to raise a single pound of farmed fish, thereby contributing to the overfishing … Credits: US Researchers Examine Antibiotic Content in Farmed Fish – The

Kill wild fish to protect farmed fish? I don’t think so

Arguably its most important recommendation was that DFO must step away from promoting salmon farming and act in accordance with its paramount regulatory objective to conserve wild fish. This proposed regulation flies in … Credits: Kill wild fish to protect farmed fish? I don’t think so : Friends of the

Nutrition Differences of Farmed Fish vs Wild Fish

A: The benefit of eating farmed salmon versus wild salmon is hotly debated. Some people take the stance that farm-raised salmon is devoid of nutrition and pumped full of toxins. However, the differences in farmed versus wild … Credits: Nutrition Differences of Farmed Fish vs. Wild Fish – Shape Magazine

Aquaculture Ahi: The Holly Grail of Fish Farming

Syd Kraul is in a contest with huge stakes and many well-funded competitors around the world. The goal is the first successfully farm-raised ahi, which would win both acclaim and millions of dollars from sushi chefs. Credits: Aquaculture Ahi: The Holy Grail of Fish Farming | Hawaii Business

6M research funding boost for farmed fish

BBSRC is building capacity in aquaculture research as UK farmed fish and shellfish become a growing component of food supplies. £6M of funding is now available to deliver bioscience and environmental science research … Credits: 2 October 2014 – £6M research funding boost for farmed fish

We found one of the best articles on this subject is this one on what everyone should know about Farmed Fish

9 Things Everyone Should Know About Farmed Fish

If you eat seafood, unless you catch it yourself or ask the right questions, the odds are pretty good it comes from a fish farm. The aquaculture industry is like a whale on steroids, growing faster than any other animal agriculture segment and now accounting for half the fish eaten in the U.S.

As commercial fishing operations continue to strip the world’s oceans of life, with one-third of fishing stocks collapsed and the rest headed there by mid-century, fish farming is seen as a way to meet the world’s growing demand. But is it really the silver bullet to solve the Earth’s food needs? Can marine farms reliably satisfy the seafood cravings of three billion people around the globe?

This article looks at aquaculture and its long-term effects on fish, people, and other animals. With this industry regularly touted as a paragon of food production, whether you eat seafood or not, you should know these nine key facts about farmed fish.

… Credits: Mind Body Green – 9 Things Everyone Should Know About Farmed Fish

As you can see Farmed Fish is seen as the solution to our growing world food problem but its not in any way sustainable or in any way can it be claimed as a sustainable seafood practice no matter how the fisheries, suppliers and chefs would like to spin it. An important development announced by the Center of food safety in the United States.

Farmed fish fed wild fish, meal or oil can never be organic

October 21, 2014 (Washington, DC)—Today, Center for Food Safety (CFS) released a comprehensive, scientific report detailing why ocean-based aquaculture (fish farming) can never be certified organic.  In advance of USDA’s publication of regulations to govern organic aquaculture, CFS’s report, Like Water and Oil:  Ocean-Based Fish Farming and Organic Don’t Mix, warns that permitting “organic” aquaculture at sea would put the entire U.S. organic industry in jeopardy by weakening the integrity of the USDA organic label.  Fifty-three fishers, organic farmers, organic consumers, and animal welfare and environmental advocacy organizations endorsed the major findings of the Report in an Organic Aquaculture Position Statement.

“It’s mind-boggling to think that USDA would seriously consider allowing fish farms at sea to be organic,” said Dr. Lisa J. Bunin, Center for Food Safety’s Organic Policy Director and the report’s co-author.  “It’s absolutely impossible to control or monitor the wide range of substances, including toxic pollutants, that flow into and out of sea-based farms.”

“We believe that the strong findings contained in this Report warrant USDA’s withdrawal of plans to allow organic ocean-based fish farming,” Dr. Bunin said.  “To do less would be irresponsible organic policy-making, and it would do a disservice to the entire organic industry.” Credits: New Report Finds Ocean-based Fish Farming at Odds with Organic 

What are the alternatives to Farmed Fish?

Here’s one solution to the farmed fish dilemma: vote with your pocketbook and eat less seafood or give it up completely. Get your omega-3’s from flax, hemp, soy, or walnuts – all without cholesterol or mercury. And just maybe, as George W. Bush hoped in a moment of unintended comedy, “the human being and fish can coexist peacefully.

While Mind Body Green has their solution to not eating Farmed fish, we at Fish & Co, and all our sustainable partners, would like to believe its not to late to save and work with Wild Fish to ensure we all prosper now and into the future. The first thing we need to do here in Australia is to be educated as consumers with excellent programs like “Whats the Catch?” and then to ensure we effect policy change at the highest levels which you can do right now with the “Label My Fish” campaign.

We believe the only way forward is for you to know what seafood you are eating no matter where you are so you can then decide what you want to eat and then effect where your fish comes from.

If you would like to know more or have anything you would like to ad to the conversation please leave a comment below.

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