What an uplifting event we had at the Portland Patagonia store last week. I’m not sure how many people were there, but it was a full house and we took in eighty-five $10 donations for Native Fish Society. But more than that, it was gratifying to feel the interest growing around the whole hatchery issue, as people begin to understand what a biological and financial failure it’s been. We had spirited–yet respectful–dialog during the Q & A session, and it was good to talk with so many new people.
My good friend and fellow Patagonia ambassador, Dave McCoy, lent his considerable photography, video and social skills, helping to make the event all the better. That’s one of Dave’s shots above, of me swinging the hatchery hammer, and another below from a bit farther back.
Huge thanks to Patagonia and Native Fish Society for putting the whole evening together, and to Patagonia Provisions, Hot Lips Pizza, Ninkasi Brewing and Brew Dr. Kombucha for the great food and drinks. Perhaps the most gratifying part of the event was an announcement by the pro-hatchery organizations that they would be boycotting all the companies that participated. Which means we’re gaining some serious traction. Let’s show these companies that supporting fish conservation is good business.
We interrupt the Cuba travelog for a brief commercial message: I will be at the Patagonia Portland store to talk about fish hatcheries and their impact on wild fish, fishing, public finances and larger environmental issues, next Thursday. There will be beer, food and other festivities to lighten the mood. If you’re in the area, please come by and check it out. We will now return you to your regularly scheduled programming. Stay tuned for more Cuba.
I’ve been working with Patagonia Provisions, the new food division of Patagonia, for several years now, but this week was a real milestone. As the first fish producer (the hot smoked salmon is already available) to actively work with fish conservation organizations, Patagonia Provisions convened their first annual Salmon Sourcing Advisory Board meeting in Ventura. The goal was to assess Provisions’ current salmon sourcing and chart the course of future options.
For me, it was a chance to hang out with some of my fish conservation heroes, and learn about the options for truly sustainable salmon products. Salmon harvest is probably the most complicated food sourcing issue in the world, but the experts came with encouraging ideas and a ton of information. It was a fantastic brainstorming session, and I left the meeting with a new optimism.
This is a picture I snapped of, from left to right, Mike Moody (Native Fish Society), Dune Lankard (Eyak Preservation Council), Kurt Beardslee (Wild Fish Conservancy), Bruce Hill (Headwaters Initiative) and Dr. Carol Anne Woody (Fisheries Research Consulting). My hope is that this was the first of many gatherings, and that the business itself will have a positive impact on the salmon industry.