July 18, 2009

DINNER begins at 5:30 PM

This Saturday at dinner we’ll be offering an Italian Riviera-style fisherman’s stew in addition to our other menu choices. It will be served in honor of our small-boat fisher-men and -women, available to forum participants and audience as well as to our regular customers. The stew will be comprised of all local fish — rockfish, squid, and clams — with wild fennel pollen, saffron, and olives, and so on.

Twenty dollars for the lovely stew, $5 for a glass of appropriate, chilled white wine. A fitting meal to cap off what we hope will be a worthwhile afternoon. You don’t have to attend the forum to join us for dinner, but we’re excited by the way the forum has evolved, and hope that you do so.

Update of this Saturday’s Fisheries Forum:
Though not widely reported, proposed is a policy that would dramatically change Pacific coast fishing, and could come about in a way that wipes out the fishermen we rely on and trust for their stewardship and the quality of fish they provide. In the worst case scenario, an entirely industrial model for our local seas would cost us our small boat fishermen — an unintended and avoidable consequence. This is a very important public policy question.

The small boat fishermen have been fighting this plan to exhaustion, while environmental groups are hopeful that a plan to reverse the degradation of the ocean’s fisheries is near. The forum will focus on a possibly positive outcome for both parties, that takes advantage of a provision in the law for the development of something called a “Community Fishing Association”. We hope to begin to describe what this might look like here in the Bay Area. Port Orford provides us with an idea of what a Community Fishing Association can accomplish. We’ll be looking for an outcome where fisher-men and -women can prosper and fisheries will be well managed for our future.

[Read more here]

The forum is FREE but please call to reserve a seat: 510-547-5356

Panel participants include:

Larry Collins – President of the San Francisco Crab Boat Owners Association, and a local fisherman

Zeke Grader – Executive Director of the Pacific Coast Federation of Fishermen’s Associations (PCFFA) since 1976. Since 1992, Grader has also served as Executive Director of the Institute for Fisheries Resources, a non-profit, non-governmental organization begun by PCFFA dedicated to the promotion of sustainable fisheries.

Dr. Churchill Grimes – Director of the Santa Cruz research facility of NOAA focused on Pacific Coast Groundfish and Pacific Salmon.

Johanna Thomas – Director of fisheries projects for the Environmental Defense Fund’s Pacific Ocean Program

Ed Euber (moderator) – Former Manager of the Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary