There is trouble in our waters and what are we going to do about it? That was the tenor of the Slow Fish gathering at Terra Madre this afternoon dedicated to Slow Food’s campaign for sustainable fish. Delegates gathered to discuss the challenges and efforts of the Slow Food network around the world working towards a good, clean and fair seafood system. Slow Food’s international Slow Fish campaign, launched after the Slow Fish event in Genoa 2009 is working to educate people on the importance of shopping locally, and being selective in what fishing practices to support.
Participants discussed the effect of global tourism and real estate ventures along our coastlines on local fishermen being able to access to their own waters and the declining state of fish stocks as a result of pollution, overfishing and a growing appetite for seafood. Jens Ambsdorf of The Lighthouse Foundation, a German organization promoting the defense of marine biodiversity, who attended the workshop, underlined the importance of focusing on the species and fishermen to move towards change. Barbara Rodenburg-Geertsema and her husband Jan from Netherlands are fisherman and passionate defenders of sustainable artisanal fishing techniques in their native Waddensee, also spoke at the workshop.
In accordance with the spirit of the Slow Food movement, the Slow Fish campaign contains the inextricable element of the importance of taste. During the workshop, Alice Waters, famed owner, and chef of the two decade-old Chez Panisse in California, USA, said her restaurant is dedicated to transforming the ‘poor man’s fish’ such as sardines and squid into a thoroughly thrilling taste experience.