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sustainable seafood

Sustainable seafood journey in Seattle

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Sustainable seafood journey in Seattle

Authors: Pei, Sallie, and Zelin

To promote more sustainable use of marine resources, it is important to educate the public on where the seafood they see on their plate comes from and how the fishing industries will affect the environment. In Asia, education on fish in food culture has gained more and more attention as one of the major environmental outreach themes. Ecotourism is the main pathway to promote education and enhance public awareness related to fish in food culture. Further practices are expected to be involved in education like fish to school program.

With an interest in exploring examples of sustainable seafood practices and education outreach in the U.S. West Coast,  Pei, Sallie, and Zelin launched an initiative to synthesize the what people on the U. S. West Coast have done to enhance seafood sustainability in the region. They shared their findings in the popular publication in Taiwan known as the Fishery Promotion Magazine under Taiwan Fishery Agency, Council of Agriculture.  

While they did enjoy the fun of doing desktop research together to review sustainable seafood education and outreach projects such as the Community Supported Aquaculture, Seafood Watch and, Alaska State-Fish to Schools Program, Pei, Sallie, and Zelin also went on an adventure for the project. They visited popular grocery stores and supermarkets like Safeway, Trader Joe’s and QFC, and to see if they could easily trace the source, fishing method, and fish stock information of fresh, frozen and processed seafood available at the store. The team also visited the first sustainable seafood sushi bar- Mashiko Sushi, and tasted the delicious seafood there. Their findings on seafood traceability and their thoughts on Mashiko Sushi is can also be found in the article.

This journey and resulting publication was a way to commemorate the deep friendship that blossomed between the three students from Taiwan, Hongkong, and China, and to demonstrate the importance of  perspective exchange and cultural communications.



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Studying Sustainable Seafood in Seattle

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Studying Sustainable Seafood in Seattle

For the past year, a group of MARINA lab students (Emily, Henry, Kadie, and Brittany) have been working on a project attempting to understand what it means for Seattle to be a "sustainable US seafood city." Last week, the group presented findings from their project at the Salish Sea Ecosystem Conference in Seattle, WA. In addition, the group published a blog post with The Nature Conservancy - a partner in this project - summarizing some of their findings. Take a look at their post here!

 

Photo Credit: TNC / Bridget Besaw

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Koehn and Allison Launch Inaugural Research Grant

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Koehn and Allison Launch Inaugural Research Grant

This fall, PhD Student Zach Koehn and Eddie Allison, along with faculty from the School of Public Health and the School of Aquatic and Fisheries Sciences, were selected to lead one of 5 inaugural pilot grants from the University of Washington’s Population Health Initiative. The Initiative encourages interdisciplinary problem solving at the intersection of human health, environmental resilience and socioeconomic equity. The grant will support Zach’s PhD research linking fisheries and food systems to address diet-based public health issues facing US West Coast communities.

Selected from a pool of more than 60 projects, this project will evaluate whether low-value or bycaught fish can enter local markets in areas with low income or low access to affordable healthy foods. On the project, Koehn noted "in low-income coastal populations, access and availability of healthy foods can be low, and there is a high incentive for people to substitute towards more affordable, but energy-dense nutrient poor food. Cost-effective bycaught species can provide a competitive alternative particularly for rural coastal communities where fishery landings are high. Unfortunately, there is little guidance on how fishery managers and related institutions can operationalize these goals towards equitable population health outcomes, particularly for tribes or low income and diaspora populations with traditional reliance on seafood." 

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Seattle as a Sustainable Seafood City?

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Seattle as a Sustainable Seafood City?

This quarter, a group of MARINA Lab members began a capstone project on sustainable seafood in the city of Seattle. On their project they noted, “for many of us who call Seattle home, local seafood is a source of pride – a signpost of our place on the leading edge of sustainability. Yet, what is unclear is just how far down the sustainable seafood path we are, as a city. For Seattle to be a premier sustainable seafood city, we need to not only more clearly define our target, but also see how far we have to go and what we can do to get there.” Over the coming months, this group will be synthesizing what is known about the flow and fate of seafood in Seattle, identifying the sustainability shortfalls, and drafting a roadmap for action for Seattle in its efforts to become a sustainable seafood pioneer. This project, is a collaboration with the Washington State chapter of the Nature Conservancy.

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