Seafood Update 3-8-18

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Thursday, 08 Mar 2018

ATTENTION ALL CHEFS & BUYERS

Jumbo Black Sea Bass

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Black Sea Bass has a mild, fresh, flavor and a tender but firm texture; meat cooks up snow white. Best small fish to bake or grill whole, black sea bass is frequently used in Asian cooking. The flesh holds together well and can be used in chowders and soups too.

 

Wild Striped Bass  

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 Wild Striped Bass, running strong keeping price low. Moderately fatty, Striped Bass has a rich flavor and a large, firm flake. Some of the highest quality stripers are caught in the winter. Cooked, the flesh is white and moist and the cooked crispy skin is also popular.

 

Mahi Mahi  

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Mahimahi (Hawaiian for dolphinfish) is one of the most beautiful fish in the ocean. Today a directed longline fishery gets them. The flesh has a sweet, mild flavor similar to Swordfish. The lean meat is fairly firm in texture, though not steak-like, and it has large, moist flakes. Mahi is great on the grill

We also have:

* Local monkfish  Monkfish

* Local Jumbo fluke  Jumbo Fluke

 

 

SEAFOOD NEWS

 

A 'Floating Fillet': Rice Farmers Grow Bugs To Replenish California's Salmon

 NPR

Rice Farmer

March 7, 2018 - Jacob Katz is on the hunt — not for geese or ducks. On a farm about 40 minutes north of Sacramento, he wades through a rice paddy with an aquarium net in hand. But he's not fishing. "We're going bug hunting," Katz says. The senior scientist for California Trout, a conservation group with a focus on protecting wild fish, is at River Garden Farms. Founded in 1913, they typically grow things like corn, wheat and around 5,000 acres of rice — the kind local sushi restaurants use.

But today, he's working on a pilot project with UC Davis to create what they call "floodplain fatties" — a nickname for the well-fed baby salmon and smelt who will eat his bugs while swimming through the Sacramento River. "Dip this net into the water and it just comes out literally full of bugs," says Katz, adding that they are mostly cladocerans, but that he calls them "water fleas." "These little bugs are floating fillet for salmon that'll be in the river."

The reason he's doing this? Young Chinook salmon and other fish need help. Much of the water they require to survive is stored in dams or diverted through thousands of miles of levees. Before this happened, floodplains in the Central Valley supported large populations of fish. The project to grow bugs for the fish is in year two and the end goal is to improve the likelihood that salmon survive the trek to the ocean and back.

"What farmers are doing is reconnecting that floodplain natural wealth to the river system where it's needed," Katz says. "More fish equals a win-win for everybody. It means we have a system that works for people and for the environment." The strategy is called the Fish Food on Floodplain Farm Fields Project. It's part of a greater effort to restore threatened fish species — the Sacramento Valley Salmon Recovery Program. The project comes at a key time: A recent UC Davis study suggests that winter-run Chinook salmon could go extinct if no efforts are made to recover the species. The latest population count is less than 2,000. In the 1970s, there were more than 25,000. The project starts with rice paddies, says River Garden Farms General Manager Roger Cornwell. He's used to flooding fields during the off-season to provide a rest stop for millions of birds along the Pacific Flyway. Now, instead of just letting the water soak into the earth, he's made a change that mimics the natural floodplain of the Sacramento River.

Foodplain

"Floodplain fatties" is a nickname for the well-fed baby salmon. Courtesy of California Trout

"We're creating fish food," Cornwell says. "It's very simple. We just pump the water in. Let it slow down and it starts to break down the carbon that is there. It creates algae, algae create bugs, and then we pump that right back to the river to feed the fish." So far, 12 farmers are growing bugs on about 50,000 acres in the Sacramento area. That's about 70 pounds of bugs per acre. The group is figuring out the details about exactly how to get that fish food back into the river on a large scale. They hope to ramp up the project with as many rice farms as possible in the future — there are more than 500,000 acres of managed floodplains in the Sacramento Valley alone.

Still, Cornwell says kinks still need to be worked out. "I think for the farmer, it's more of how effectively can we get food to the fish," he says. "We've got to have all the processes figured out to make it easy for everyone to implement," such as resolving complications with irrigation pumps and canals. Carson Jeffres — an aquatic biologist with UC Davis — and Katz published a study last year that suggests that, when farmers and conservationists work together, there could be more fish in California Rivers. He thinks projects like this could help eliminate the popular farms versus fish argument. "As opposed to standing with our heads in the sand, this is getting us to a place where we can have real impact and change over time," says Jeffres, who adds that the project could later be implemented in other rivers like the San Joaquin.

Back on the rice farm, Cornwell prepares to release the bug-rich water back into the Sacramento River through a system of pumps and canals. "This water's been out here for right at three weeks right now," he says. For Cornwell, who's farmed in the region for more than a decade, this science-farm partnership costs him about $45 per acre. "We're stepping out of our comfort zone," he says. "As this grows people will see what we are doing, and we will start developing trust among neighbors — and then this program is just going to take off on its own." He says the minimal cost is worth it to save fish and to make sure the acreage is around for future generations.

 

U.S. Seafood Can Help Solve One of the World’s Greatest Challenges

 NOAA Fisheries

 Seafood Guy

March 3, 2018 - The world population is growing—significantly. When I was born, there were about 3 billion people in the world. Today, our planet supports 7.6 billion people, and by 2050 we expect it will need to support closer to 10 billion. One of the challenges of this population growth is ensuring we can sustainably feed everyone with limited natural resources.

With sound management practices, seafood has the potential to contribute to food security for the growing global population. A recent United Nations report notes that a key factor in maintaining seafood production levels worldwide is to continue to reduce overfishing. NOAA Fisheries and our partners have made great progress in ending overfishing in the United States through science-based management and collaboration. At the same time, we advance and export these best practices internationally and work to level the playing field for our fishermen and seafood farmers.

As the UN report points out, the global population is rising but the abundance of wild fish is not. The future of sustainable seafood relies on responsible farm-raised seafood to augment our wild-capture resources. Already, aquaculture has become the fastest growing form of food production worldwide. Seafood farming, when done responsibly—as it is in the United States—is increasingly recognized as one of the most efficient and environmentally sustainable ways to produce animal protein. It also promises to expand the U.S. seafood supply in the face of environmental change and economic uncertainty.

Although the U.S. aquaculture industry is a small producer on a global scale, it is a vibrant and growing industry providing 21% of the seafood produced in the United States by value ($1.4 billion farm-gate value per year). Aquaculture is already important in some regions of the United States where oyster, mussel, clam, fish, and seaweed farms are creating jobs and helping to keep working waterfronts alive. Ensuring this momentum continues and accelerates is key to the Administration’s commitment to create jobs and expand a safe, secure, and sustainable U.S. seafood supply now and into the future.