Since 2009, in more than 60 countries, the 580 member properties of Relais & Châteaux have been working together to raise awareness among their guests on the importance of sustainable seafood products. For the sixth straight year, Relais & Châteaux will celebrate World Oceans Day on June 8, in partnership with Ethic Ocean.
This year, Relais & Châteaux wants to amplify the theme of SEAsonality and unearth that the notion of “seasonality” is not necessarily a criterion of sustainability when it comes to seafood. The first and most essential criterion is verification of stock status.
Throughout the month of June, hundreds of Relais & Châteaux chefs will be showcasing sustainable seafood products and explaining this accurate definition of seasonality that counters many preconceived notions.
Three Relais & Châteaux members address the implications of SEAsonality at their properties with respect to ocean and freshwater fishing as well as aquaculture:
- Chef Elena ARZAK (Restaurante ARZAK, Donostia, San Sebastián, Spain) shines a spotlight on the European anchovy (Engraulis encrasicolus), for which stocks in the Bay of Biscay have been replenished by virtue of a five-year fishing ban between 2005 and 2010. This resource is now carefully monitored, and the chef remains consistently involved in the process with local fishers and the local AZTI research center.
- Chef Scott BACON (The Ivy Hotel – MAGDALENA restaurant, Baltimore, Maryland, United States) has added an invasive species from the Chesapeake Bay, the blue catfish (Ictalurus furcatus), to the menu to focus attention on a little-known species that, when treated as a food fish, can impact an entire ecosystem.
- Owner Hannes BAREISS (Hotel BAREISS, Baiersbronn-Mitteltal, Germany) has established one of the most modern and innovative fish farms in Baden-Württemberg for hatching, rearing, and maturing trout. By modernizing the Forellenhof Buhlbach aquaculture station over a five-year period, he developed a leading-edge model of sustainable aquaculture that is environmentally friendly and respects animal welfare.
“Working on the seasonality of seafood products means challenging a lot of preconceived notions and shifting focus to the state of the stocks of fish, crustaceans, and mollusks, as well as the fishing conditions involved in harvesting them. To learn to respect marine life by rethinking this concept of seasonality and thanks to the work of Ethic Ocean, Relais & Châteaux chefs have access to the most up-to-date scientific data on the state of seafood stocks. This way, they become public ambassadors for best practices – not only in the restaurant, but at the fishmonger’s, too. This notion of SEAsonality helps us better grasp the true urgency of protecting the ocean,” says Mauro Colagreco, Vice President of Relais & Châteaux.
Join us for United Nations World Oceans Day (#UNWorldOceansDay) to celebrate SEAsonality (#SEAsonality #SEAsonnalité) and inspire the world to take action showcasing that the tides are changing (#planetocean #tidesarechanging).
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