Blog: Fish to Fork

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The sustainable seafood movement is always evolving, which is why Jenny Slafkosky, Bon Appétit’s communications director, joined Maisie Ganzler, chief strategy and brand officer, in San Juan, Puerto Rico at the end of October for the Conservation Alliance for Seafood Solutions (CASS) annual conference.  

Sheepshead. Ribbonfish. Wahoo. Tilefish. When Locals Seafood co-founder and North Carolina native Ryan Speckman was living on the Outer Banks of North Carolina in the late 2000’s, he and his friends feasted on these native seafood species regularly. He wondered why, when he was growing up in the inland part of the state, he’d never encountered fish from the Carolina coast before – and most residents hadn’t either.

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Taylor Fish Farm has an unusual back story and a bright future, as Bon Appétit Manager of Strategic Initiatives Nicole Tocco Cardwell and Fellow Shira Kaufman learned when the pair visited this Fish to Fork vendor in Cedar Grove, NC.

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This past fall, to celebrate the 15th anniversary of our Farm to Fork program, Bon Appétit gave away ten $5,000 grants to our local farmers, fishermen, and artisans around the country to help them grow their business. Here’s how Locals Seafood of Raleigh, NC, is using theirs.

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As I and the other current and former Fellows learned on our recent field trip to Monterey Bay Aquarium — whose Seafood Watch program has long been an important Bon Appétit partner organization — one thing that sets it apart is its mission to inspire the conservation of the oceans. And inspired we were by the end of the day.

In 2010 the Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians came together to set up the Salmon Marketing Program. The program buys fish caught by tribal members on tribal land, pays the fishermen a sustainable living wage, processes the fish at a facility owned and operated by the community, and then distributes the products itself to ensure the integrity of the process. The program has expanded to new markets — and Bon Appétit is proud to be a customer.