Buying In to the Sea - Oceana USA
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January 15, 2009

Buying In to the Sea

You’ve probably heard about community-supported agriculture (CSA). For a few hundred bucks a season, you buy in as a member of a CSA, and every week you get a box full of fresh, local produce from a nearby farm. Local farmers benefit, and so do you. Can the same concept apply to fisheries? The trend is growing, apparently, as a story about a community-supported fishery (CSF) in Maine’s Penobscot Bay demonstrates in yesterday’s Washington Post.There are considerably fewer fish in the Atlantic nowadays as a result of decades of overfishing on the East Coast. As a result, small fishermen need a new way to do business in order to stay afloat, so to speak. So a CSF such as Port Clyde Fresh Catch may be one alternative that makes both economic and ecological sense. The fishermen get paid more per pound for their catch, and they use smaller-scale, more sustainable fishing methods. Plus, members of the CSF get loads of tasty local seafood — the shrimp described in the article sound scrumptious, especially compared with the environmentally unsound version in the freezer section of your supermarket that made their way from Asia.Read the full article and see what you think — Is this the way of the future for small fishermen? Would you buy into a CSF if you could?