This post was written by Chefs Collaborative member, Chef Rich Garcia.  Rich attended our sustainable seafood discussion this past Tuesday at Craigie on Main.

Chef Rich Garcia:

On Tuesday of this past week I was thrilled to be a part of a sustainable seafood “round table” hosted by Chefs Collaborative, The New England Aquarium & Tony Maws and his team at Craigie On Main in Cambridge MA.

The turnout of chefs was amazing and to me it was proof that Sustainable Seafood options are becoming more of a concern within the culinary community.

It was great to hear from chefs directly what there concerns were and what they were doing in their own kitchens to make sure that their seafood selections are sustainable.

Chef Tony Maws made some great points about sourcing from farms or fisheries who may not necessarily be local, but whom he believes to be doing the right thing for the fishing industry, thus justifying his purchase.

One of the most impressive stories came from Chef Kevin Doherty, Executive chef TD Bank North Garden/Regional Chef Delaware North Companies who made it very clear that its difficult for a company and venue of their size to think about sustainability on all fronts, but it was very impressive that his company has put into effect new policies that force the companies chefs across the country to make sustainable seafood choices as part of their mission to change their ways despite being such a large food service operation.

Some other chefs who made it a point to attend and share their practices were Chef Michael Leviton of Lumiere, Michael Scelfo of Russel House Tavern and Temple Bar, Jason Bond of Beacon Hill Hotel & Bistro, and Jose Duarte of Taranta who is leading the way in the Boston Restaurant scene with his research on sustainability and carbon reduction as a way of reducing costs, offsetting an average of 80 metric tons per year, certifying Taranta as one of the few Green Restaurants in the world.

For more information on sustainable seafood choices Chefs Collaborative has put out an interactive web based tool to help teach chefs about making better choices. Green Chefs Blue Oceans is a sustainable seafood course you can take at your own pace. I took this course with my team when it was first launched and it has really helped me understand some of the better choices I can make.

Thanks, Chef, for writing about our sustainable seafood discussion and thanks to all who attended!  We are planning more get-togethers of this nature to help our chefs connect, and to bring them even more cohesive information on how to implement sustainable seafood choices in their menus.