Hold fire on the Sea Bass recipe! (Retraction and Apology)

Within days of my Stuffed Sea Bass recipe going live I received the following email:

give-bass-a-break

Wild bass stocks are dangerously low
We urgently need to catch less and eat less!

Scientists say that no seabass should be caught in 2017 to allow the population of this favourite fish to start to recover.

Whether you’re choosing it to cook at home or to serve up to customers – just STOP buying WILD CAUGHT seabass and switch to an alternative like farmed bass (ask for certified, responsibly farmed bass).

Most people will encounter farmed seabass especially in supermarkets, but many restaurants and fishmongers still serve wild bass.

MSC certified hake, mackerel and haddock are also great replacements for wild bass – they’re green rated on our Good Fish Guide so are guilt-free choices for fish-eaters.

I have a lot of respect for the Marine Conservation Society, and they only send me emails once in a blue moon, so I take them seriously. It is so frustrating that there is no national restriction on fish sales – I would like to think any fish in the supermarkets is guaranteed to be from non-endangered, sustainable stocks. As it stands it is down to us as consumers to stay informed and exercise consumer choice.

I hereby apologise for promoting a red-listed fish and to make amends I am asking my readers to please only try my recipe using one of the following substitutes:

  • Farmed Sea Bass
  • Mackerel
  • Hake
  • Haddock

Furthermore, if you believe in helping fishing become a fully sustainable industry please consider signing the pledge to not eat bass on the MCS campaign site by following the yellow button link above. Also, sign up to the Marine Conservation Society to get alerts like the one above.

In the meantime, I’m going to edit my recipe to flag these alternatives.

3 thoughts on “Hold fire on the Sea Bass recipe! (Retraction and Apology)

  1. I definitely support the protection of sea bass and eat other fish instead – just not farmed sea bass or any farmed fish due to the ‘production’ methods. Farmed fish often swim in a soup of antibiotics and are fed a high protein meal containing GE soy beans. For me sustainably wild caught fish is the go.

    • Quite! Wild Alaskan Salmon is a regular in our house as the fisheries are extremely well managed. As far as farmed fish go, organic certified farmed fish avoid the antibiotic and GM issues you mention.

      • It’s been a while since Joanna Blythman wrote her article in the guardian about organic farmed fish, but I believe not much has changed. (You can have a look at the original article here: https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2006/oct/22/food.foodanddrink
        Some see this practice as a valid attempt to improve on conventional fish farming whereas critics point out the shortcomings. There is a fundamental ‘natural’ difference between organic farming on land and in the water. Joanna finishes her opinion piece:
        “if we want to eat truly sustainable fish, then we must face up to the fact that the days when we routinely ate cheap salmon as a staple food are numbered. Not necessarily a bad thing” – I wouldn’t agree with the latter but have to accept the former.

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