Fishing methods & sustainability

Hello again. I’ve recently just come back from a study Tour of Billingsgate fish market in canary wharf in london This was an experience I won’t forget. and a very fun day out. even though it was a 5.30 start but as as chef I’m always up early. Here’s what I learnt about fish and susstainablity.

Sustainability is important because it means leaving enough fish in the ocean to ensure the fish population can remain healthy and proactive. Respecting habitats & helping people that depend on fishing can maintain there livelihoods. So when we fish we need to do it in sustainable ways and avoid unsustainable where ever possible. Here are some fishing methods sustainable & unstainable.

Dredging unsustainable. Damages the ocean floor by dragging a large mesh bag to catch clams, shellfish, scallops. This seriously damages habitats and the oceans floor.

Purse seining- sustainable. like a giant drawstring bag. They attract schools of fish trapping them. This works well.for but not well when catch larger fish like tuna as tuna attracted dolphins. Dolphins along with tuna get caught in the nets. Although now many fish vessels that catch tuna now have devices on the nets to release the dolphins

Trolling – sustainable this method involves hook fishing individually, rather each line being hand held like in Hook and line fishing. Trolling is when indivually ancore lines are towed along the ocean. Its sustainable as your catching one fish at a time and there is no ” by catch “

Long lining – unsustainable this method includes one very long fish line that can extend up to 50 miles. This is very unstsinable because they attract un intended species like birds and other ocean species this is called by catch. By catch is discarded in the sea.

Trawling – unstainable trawling is reasonable for the largest percentage of commercially caught fish this involves towing a funnel shaped net through the water and various depths. Trawlers like dregders cause servere damage to the ocean and it’s habitats

Some of the freshist catch of the day.


Important characteristic to look out for when buying fish.

  1. Fresh and mild odour

  2. Eyes clear and not sunken / glossy

  3. Bright red gills not grey / brown

  4. Skin is shiny & bright

  5. Flesh is firm and springy

  6. Belly cavity is intact

To help fish population grow we should fish with the seasons. Which basically sounds as it is. Fishing with the seasons will allow the fish population is regrow and so that we don’t take to many of that one fish.

Right now in the U.K for July we have some lovely fish in season. Cod,Dover Sole, gurnard,haddock, lemon sole, plaice, farmed sea bass. But that is in season all year round as it’s farmed.

we should eat more fish because it’s full of omega 3 and vitamins that support a healthier diet. but not take too many fish at once so population levels remain high. We need to ensure the futures of our oceans Always think sustainable and how it’s caught. Always ask when buying. If they don’t know then don’t but it.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s