Saturday, 22 June 2013

glacier 51: toothsome stuff in broadsheet sydney

Over the past few months, I've been working with the legendary John Susman and his seafood agency Fishtales, to tell the story of Glacier 51 Toothfish making a launch onto Australian restaurant plates this winter. In the past, the species has been plagued with danger of extinction, linked with illegal poaching and piracy due to the fish's exceptional flavour, texture and luxurious nature. In essence - it was too tasty for its own good.

Over the past 15 years, Austral Fisheries, based out of Perth not only discovered stocks of the species in the Australian Antarctic just off Heard Island, but they've also worked with the Australian government to eradicate illegal fishing in the area. This has resulted in Austral establishing Glacier 51 as the world's first Marine Stewardship Council certified sustainable Toothfish fishery. Add to this, it also has props on the Best Choice list for the USA's Monterey Bay Aquarium seafood watch program.

Each year, Austral put back 26, 000 Toothfish after tagging them, so that they can be studied and tracked. This effort will ensure long term sustainability for the species, through protection, education and awareness.

Yes, it's rare. Yes, it's expensive - and this exclusivity means that the species simply isn't affordable for every restaurant and cafe in the country to have, which in itself helps to regulate the demand for the species.

Politics and issues aside, it's a story that should be celebrated - and you'll see it on the menu at restaurants such as Rockpool Bar & Grill (Syd, Mel, Per), Spice Temple, Osteria Balla, Icebergs, Red Lantern, Mr Wong's and more.

Click HERE for Jane De Graaf's recent piece in Broadsheet that tells the whole story.