Group works with environmental advocates to reach out to seafood suppliers
San Francisco, CA -- (SBWIRE) -- 11/02/2012 -- Bondi Beach could become Australia’s first sustainable seafood neighborhood, if a plan hatched by a group of top restaurateurs succeeds.
They met with representatives of Greenpeace, the Marine Stewardship Council and the WWF at Bondi Pavilion to hash out ideas and encourage seafood suppliers to be more transparent about where their catch comes from.
The effort was the brainchild of Sandra Marshall, who is with the Blue Starfish, a nonprofit organization.
“We want to be sort of Mecca for sustainable fish, so people know exactly what they are getting when they come here,” Marshall told The Sydney Morning Herald. She said she was inspired by a documentary on overfishing.
“It’s good for the environment and, hopefully, good for tourism,” she said.
Along the well-known waterfront, about six tons of fish are consumed daily. Almost half of that is thought to come from fish stocks that have become depleted.
The group wants suppliers to publish online guides showing where their seafood came from.
But the term “sustainable” can be tricky because it means different things to different people. “Dolphin friendly” tuna might not be friendly to other vulnerable species. Or for others, the word might suggest a fishing ban.
Chef Tom Walton acknowledges the difficulties.
“There’s so much misinformation out there about what’s sustainable and what’s not,” Walton told The Herald. He works at Bondi Beach’s The Bucket List.
Many restaurants and chefs are left to take their own course when striving to be “sustainable.”
The Bucket List purchases accidentally-caught fish to help fill its pantry for the 200 kg of fish-and-chips produced each week. At Bondi’s Best Seafood, Joel Best seeks specific fish caught on lines – rather than with nets – and pays a higher price.
The group is aiming to get all of Bondi’s eateries to avoid seafood taken from depleted fisheries, Marshall said.
BagOutFishingCharters.com (http://bagoutfishingcharters.com/) is an online resource for fishing charters out of Melbourne. Visitors can learn about fishing excursions for shark, tuna and snapper. Readers can check out the boat and get a fishing report at the Bag Out Fishing Charters website.
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