Thursday, January 19, 2017
How to enjoy Hawaii fish that is free from the taint of slave labor
by Larry Geller
Tonight we’re going to enjoy Hawaii-caught fish that is completely traceable—so that we know that we won’t be feasting at the expense of trafficked foreign fishermen. Update: Thursday night’s pic added at the bottom of this article.Here’s one way to purchase the freshest fish—and to be sure that it was caught without the taint of human slavery.
We subscribe to a CSF (community supported fishery) that works like the more familiar CSA (community supported agriculture) economic model in that customers purchase shares and pick up their fish at designated points around town each week.
Last week’s fish from Local I'a was ahi, and this week’s is aku.
Each bag of fish is labeled with a number and a QR code that can be used to trace the fish and verify that it is sustainably caught.
Here’s a screenshot of some of the info for last week’s fish:
Information includes the species of fish, who caught it, and where it was harvested, landed and processed.
There’s more information for the clicking:
Clicking further yields information on the person who caught the fish and on how it was caught:
This fishery uses a variety of artisanal hook-and-line methods to catch coastal pelagic fish such as tuna, marlin, swordfish, mahi mahi, wahoo (ono) and others. A pole and line with live bait scattered into the water is used to catch feeding skipjack tuna. Trolling with lures and lines, and handlines with lures, lines and bait bags are used to target larger fish such as bigeye tuna, swordfish, mahi mahi and wahoo.
The technology exists to trace any fish, even those caught within the longline fleet. Of course, the Hawaii Fish Auction would not do well if it was revealed that much of their fish is caught under questionable circumstances. So don’t expect your fish to have QR codes on ‘em any time soon—unless you buy them via a CSF.
I can’t end this article without at least some snapshots of how Nanette prepared the ahi. The fish share was large enough for three meals for the two of us. We started out with ahi sashimi on the day she picked up our share. Here’s the pic:
And two preparations of aku (katsuo) from last year:
Update: Thursday night’s fish dish: katsuo tataki:
All veggies local from the Blaisdell Farmers Market (4-7 p.m. Wednesdays, free parking!).