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One Fish Foundation Values

The One Fish Foundation values compass points toward sustainable seafood that is good, clean, and fair and that comes from well-managed fisheries and local, transparent supply chains supporting community-based seafood harvesters.

We support:

  • Thoughtful, interactive education and discourse that sparks curiosity and a deeper understanding of our relationship to seafood as a resource;
  • Discussions that prompt seafood eaters to take responsibility for knowing the story behind their seafood. See the One Fish Foundation 7 C’s of Sustainable Seafood below;
  • Seafood that is local, abundant and good, clean and fair. See our definition of “sustainable seafood” below; and,
  • Collaboration with organizations and individuals that share our values and willingness to explore solutions to the many challenges facing seafood sustainability.

One Fish Foundation 7 C’s of Sustainable Seafood

Here’s a handy guideline for your next seafood purchase. These principles give you a framework to help you choose seafood that is local, abundant, harvested responsibly, and that fairly compensates the fishermen.

  1. Curiosity: Ask where, when and how your fish was caught, and by whom.
  2. Community-Based: Choose local seafood harvested by community-based fishermen who care about the resource.
  3. Supply Chain: Patronize local seafood stores (or subscribe to Community Supported Fisheries) that ensure transparency back to the boat and pay a fair price to fishermen.
  4. Change It Up: Try underutilized species. (ex. hake, scup, mackerel, cusk, Acadian redfish, etc.).
  5. Cycles: Eat within the ecosystem, (ie, local seafood available during different seasons).
  6. Cultivate an understanding of sustainable shellfish aquaculture practices and avoid industrial aquaculture products.
  7. Connect the Dots: Learn how our choices on land affect ocean health. Climate change, natural resource extraction, and chemical run-off are just some man-made byproducts impacting overall marine ecosystem balance.

Our definition of sustainable seafood

Ask five people to define “sustainable seafood,” and you’ll likely get five different answers. Often colored by third-party certification systems, their personal values around food systems tend to weigh heavily on their seafood purchasing decisions.

That’s why we begin every discussion with our own definition. The more you know about your seafood, the better. The same is true for buying eggs at a local store or farmer’s market.

Sustainable seafood is:

  • Local: Just as with buying local eggs, you want to buy seafood from someone you trust. So maybe you don’t know the fisherman, but why not get to know who is selling you the fish? In general, the closer you can get to the source of your seafood, the better. However, “location” is becoming less about geography and more about relationships. For example, someone living in Kansas may belong to a community-supported fishery that delivers shrimp from Louisiana from a fisherman she has met online or in person.
  • Abundant: Choosing seafood from stocks with healthy populations, often under-appreciated species, is an important sustainable seafood choice. It’s also important to eat seafood that is seasonally available.
  • Good, clean, fair:
    • Good – is wholesome, seasonal, local, fresh, processed with care, meets quality and safety standards, and delicious;
    • Clean – is responsibly harvested, preserves biodiversity, sustains the environment, and nourishes a healthy lifestyle for both humans and animals;
    • Fair – honors the dignity of labor from boat to plate, provides a fair price to harvesters, honors cultural diversity and traditions, and strengthens awareness of our ocean as a public commons resource. This food is accessible for everyone to enjoy.

We also share and support values from partner organizations such as Local Catch Network’s Core Values, and North American Marine Alliance’s thorough values, vision and theory of change discussions.