Finfish to Shellfish

As two Midwesterners who moved to Puget Sound, we found out exactly how little we knew about seafood. After all, the fish we grew up on came out of lakes and streams.

This collection of exclusive GoodFood World articles introduces the many people who work together to bring sustainably harvested and carefully handled finfish and shellfish to your table.

Puget Sound Shellfish at Risk

By the time the first settlers reached the small spit of land that was ultimately to become part of Seattle Washington in 1850, the Olympia oyster population on the Pacific coast was already beginning to be over harvested. And in the early 1900s, poor water quality in Puget Sound threatened to finish it off. Puget Sound shellfish are at risk again.
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Fishy Fish Tales

Today fishing industries around the world – both fin fish and shellfish – are continuing to harvest as large a quantity of fish as possible, mostly without regard to the remaining fish stocks, the environmental effects of wild and farmed catch, and the careful labeling and identification of the product in restaurants and markets. And to make matters worse, we are facing the introduction of genetically engineered fish into the American food system.
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Geoduck - Hard to Say, but Big Business!

Here in the Pacific Northwest a clam called a geoduck – pronounced “gooey duck” – is the butt of many lewd comments because of its unusual shape. Actually, it’s just a case of outgrowing that way-too-small shell! Geoducks are the largest burrowing clam in the world, and Washington shellfish growers have only been raising them since 1991. And now nearly 800,000 pounds of them seem to be missing.
Read more: Geoduck – Hard to Say, but Big Business!

Breakup of Farms into 5-acre Farmettes Puts Shellfish at Risk

Shellfish production is a $100 million business in Washington, and Samish Bay contains many thousands of acres of shellfish farms. Nonpoint pollution, most often caused by agricultural runoff, has closed the shellfish beds repeatedly over the last several years. Now both Skagit County and the state of Washington are focusing on the problem.
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Guess What Kind of Fish You're Eating?

Recent studies have found that seafood may be mislabeled as often as 25% to 70% of the time for fish like red snapper, wild salmon, and Atlantic cod, disguising species that are less desirable, cheaper or more readily available. There are more than 1,700 different species of seafood from all over the world now available for sale in the U.S. Could you tell what kind of fish is on your plate? Or, even harder, what’s in that fish stick or burger?
Read more: Guess What Kind of Fish You’re Eating?

Have We Seen the End of Overfishing in US Waters?

Steve Murawski, recently retired chief scientist at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Fisheries Service, has happily announced that, for the first time in the documented history of commercial fishing, we have seen the end of overfishing in US waters.
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A Tale of Two Fish - Which Would You Rather Eat?

We are just beginning to understand that we may soon reach the end of the line – pun intended – for some of our “keystone” fish species: salmon, sea bass, cod and tuna. Top chefs in the US and Europe are pushing for sustainable seafood; “sustainable sushi” bars are popping up in cities across the country; and food service giants are offering sustainable seafood. But how is a discerning consumer going to find good quality, sustainable fish to purchase for his or her own table?
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Frozen Fish Help Cool the Climate

The need for speed with perishable foods makes air cargo the only practical way to get fresh fish to customers an ocean away. But once the seafood is frozen, there’s no rush, and it can take a slow boat trip to market. Mile for mile, ton for ton, air cargo puts out at least 20 times more carbon dioxide than shipping at sea does. “Frozen-at-Sea” processing delivers perfect fish to retailers, restaurateurs, and consumers.
Read more: Frozen Fish Help Cool the Climate