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The U.S. Controls More Ocean Than Any Other Nation, So Why Do We Import 91 Percent Of Our Seafood?

Seattle's Pike Place Market.
Flickr Photo/girl_onthe_les (CC-BY-NC-ND)

Here in the Northwest we take pride in our regional seafood industry, but details about the big picture of seafood distribution may surprise or appall you. Our guest this week on Speakers Forum is Paul Greenberg, author of the book “American Catch: The Fight for Our Local Seafood.”

The U.S., which controls more ocean than any other nation, imports 91 percent of its seafood.

In his book, Greenberg urges us to "build a bridge from the plate back to the estuary. This requires us to not just to eat local seafood. It requires the establishment of a working relationship with salt marshes, oyster beds, the natural flow of water from river to sea, and the integrity of the ocean floor.”

Greenberg writes regularly for the New York Times on fish, aquaculture and the future of the ocean. In 2011 he won the James Beard Award for Writing and Literature for his book “Four Fish: The Future of the Last Wild Food”.

He spoke at Town Hall Seattle on July 10 as part of their Civics series. Thanks to Sam Kollar for this recording. 

Year started with KUOW: 2006