Jon Walker, Sustainable Fish City
Jon Walker works for Sustain and has been helping public sector caterers in London, such as hospitals and universities, to buy more sustainable food. He also contributed extensively to the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic food advisory group and its development of a Food Vision for Games catering.
Over the past year, Jon has been helping with the development of Sustainable Fish City, to see what can be achieved through concerted action by London's citizens and organisations, to secure the future for sustainable fish. Here he explains more about the importance of sustainable fish.
Why do you think sustainable fish is important?
We are caretaking the health of our oceans and their ability to supply food for future generations. Imagine a world where we had destroyed life in our oceans. It does not have to be that way if we take personal responsibility for our actions now.
What have you done to support sustainable fish?
Personally, I only eat fish that is Marine Stewardship Council certified or on the Marine Conservation Society's "fish to eat" list. With Sustain, I have had the pleasure of working with many hospitals, universities and other public sector organisations who have adopted sustainable seafood polices for the food they serve.
What would you say to a business considering improving the sustainability of the fish they sell?
This is so easy. Take action. Make sure your organisation only serves Marine Stewardship Council certified fish and Marine Conservation Society 'fish to eat'. Avoid Marine Conservation Society 'red listed' fish. Tell others why you have chosen to do this. Job done, you have helped save the world!
If you are buying anything else, try fish on the Marine Conservation Society 'amber list', then think about what you are doing. Is it neccessary? The answer will probably be no.
I firmly believe that people serving and selling unsustainable seafood are usually doing so because they have not had the information put in front of them. Here comes Sustainable Fish City!!
To find out about support for public sector caterers in London, to help them improve the sustainability of their food, see the Good Food on the Public Plate website: http://www.gfpp.org.uk
Allegra McEvedy MBE, chef, writer and presenter
"To stand by and do nothing, say nothing as we slowly drain the oceans of their livestock is to make one complicit, and that's just not a position with which I was comfortable."
Caroline Bennett, Moshi Moshi
"I am determined to do something about the way we fished the seas. We know the problems, we don’t even need any additional information to know how to fix them: we just have to get on and do it. No excuses."
Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Fish Fight
“I have been travelling around the UK meeting fishermen, marine conservationists, politicians, supermarkets bosses, and of course fish-eating members of the public. It has changed the way I think about fish.”
Raymond Blanc OBE, Chef Patron, Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons
“Good ethics should be part of everyday business. Many restaurants and caterers in this are helping to protect our precious marine resources. They should get rightful recognition and inspire others to do the same.”
Rosie Boycott, London Food Board
"Taking a sustainable approach to fish is critical to the food security of our city. It is shocking to think that within our lifetimes, we could lose some of our favourite species from the seas forever."
Silla Bjerrum, Feng Sushi
"Ensuring the future supply of fish is very important. Eating fish can be a component of a healthy lifestyle. Future generations rely on us to pass on healthy seas and maintain biodiversity."
Tim Hughes, Caprice Holdings
"It’s our duty to impart our knowledge to a wider audience, so everybody realises how important it is to cherish our fish stocks. I will continue to champion lesser-known species in plentiful and sustainable supply."