This week I am in Fort Lauderdale attending the annual Florida Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics symposium. Opening night keynote speaker was Chef Barton Seaver. Maybe you have seen his book “For Cod and Country? His background is culinary with a special interest in seafood and the oceans. His mission is to help consumers eat healthier while eating in a sustainable manner. Currently, he is an explorer for National Geographic and he is also involved with the Harvard School of Public Health.
In his mind, the most successful environmental campaign to hit an urban area has been recycling. I know that you have seen the logo: Recycle Reduce Re-Use). But it is not sustainable because we haven’t reduced the number of plastic bottles, etc, that we produce each year.
Managing the fishing industry in a sustainable manner is also challenging. Because 95% of the fish that we eat comes from only 10 species, and 65% comes from only 3, we have created an economy that is wasteful: 90% of what is caught never feeds anyone, and is released back into the ocean dead or dying. Day after day. Without so much as a chance for the oceans to restore and refresh.
His solution? Eating what the ocean provides (catch of the day); eating smaller portions to reduce overfishing a species; eat farm-raised as often as possible; shift your preferences down the food chain; eat diversely. His recommendation? “When you set your table, be mindful of the impact your food choices make on your body, the community and the environment”.