Thursday, September 01, 2005

Seafood forum, Canadian style


This link to a discussion through a Canadian publication mirrors the issues that Alaskan fishermen face. They get downright personal in the obscurity of anonimity. It's refreshing to see fishermen and others speak their minds like this. I don't know of a similar venue in Alaska.

Alaskans are big on meetings, task forces and other face to face meetings. But these leave something to be desired in getting to the bottom of what fishermen and others are really thinking. Getting up in public is intimidating for a lot of fishermen, so they have people speak for them that don't always know what they really want.

There are over fifty fishermen's and other seafood organizations in Alaska, and growing all the time, all with their "executive directors" that arrange more meetings to get their group heard. Has this helped? Prices for fish is the acid test.

The Canadian fishermen have the same complaints. Some of their complaints I saw in the Tyee article on all the Canadian "Darth Vaders" they are up against are some of the most eloquent I've seen. And they get down to brass tacks right quickly. They have always been ahead of Alaskans in some regards, but not this time.

They are just as disjointed when it comes to confronting the real threats to their industry as Alaskan fishermen are. For example, look at this, from Irish cattle producers. "Last week's revelations about the much lower production demands on beef from Brazil highlighted the width of the gap between standards that satisfy importers and those required of home production."

What fishermen's group, out of the four or five dozen, are looking into the "wholesomeness" of imported seafood as opposed to wild Alaskan seafood? (I'm a little more worried than before after getting indigestion from eating farmed king salmon the other day.) Quality is more than bled and chilled.

Alaskans could learn to have open anonymous discussions like the Canadians, at least to vent their frustrations and get on with life, if not solve problems. This was the thesis of that Canadian who wrote about his experiences in the fisheries all the way to being an aide in top government offices.

2 Comments:

Blogger Mr. Energy Drink said...

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Blogger Frank Nygard said...

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