This weekend I realized how unaware people are about the global crisis concerning commercial fishing when the chain-restaurant I work at on the weekends, Bertucci's, began selling wild-caught Chilean Sea Bass! While they assure it is from reputable sources, no sources are reputable, or safe for that matter. Chilean Sea Bass are a slow-growing species that breed late in life, so any fishing for them is extremely devastating for the recovering population. Also, each year approximately 200,000 endangered albatross birds are caught in the long lines of hooks used to troll for sea bass and other fish. Sounds really reputable, doesn't it?
You may or may not know already that 29% of all fished species are down in population by 90%! Yes, that's correct, many currently fished species are down to the last 10% of the populations compared to 50 years ago and in 50 more, at the rate we are going, they will all be extinct! Let me just sat that again, EXTINCT! That means they will disappear from the planet for good!
The scariest part is it's not just the fish we have to worry about, but countless other species and habitats are being destroyed in the process. One of the most destructive fishing methods is trolling for shrimp. The shrimp trollers drag nets across the sea floor over and over destroying the fragile coral reefs and killing countless edangered species. Did you know that 80-90% of the catch from a shrimp troll contains non-shrimp species. To put that in perspective, for every pound of commercial shrimp, about 10 pounds of other sea life ended up being killed in the process. Sickening, isn't it?
Like many vegans/vegetarians, sadly, fish was the last animal product I gave up because of my love affair with sushi. Now, I only eat the vegetable rolls and I don't miss the fish one bit! As long as there is wasabi and soy-sauce, it tastes like sushi to me!
Please do your part and give up, or at least cut down on your fish intake! The oceans and planet will thank you. Also, please watch the following videos I have provided, which show even more detail about the fishing crisis and what you can do to help. If you are into podcasts, I recently discovered and amazing one on iTunes called Vegetarian Food for Thought, be sure to check out the episode entitled, Fish Consumption and By-Catch! It was very eye-opening for me and I know it will be for you as well.
As always, don't forget to voice your opinions in the form of a comment, so I can better direct my information to your own personal interests.
Also, visit www.compassionatecooks.com to learn more about living vegan!
REMEMBER, SPREADING THE WORD IS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING YOU CAN DO TO HELP!