Monday, September 27, 2010

Last week I went by Turner's Seafood in Gloucester to pick up some Bluefish that Jim and Kathi Turner donated for a Sustainable Seafood Cooking Demonstration at the Healthy Living Expo (thanks again Jim and Kathi!). Turner's is one of the partners in Cape Ann Fresh Catch, and I have to say they are great people and a real pleasure to work with. They are committed to to helping and improving on every aspect of the program, and all of us are glad to be working with them. I'd never been to their facility, which has a retail storefront as well as the fish processing plant in the back. The video below is a snapshot of a day in the life at Turner's unloading and filleting Yellowtail flounders for CAFC.

Because of the way the rules work, fish must be landed, handled and processed at a facility that not only meets the legal health and safety requirements, but also has the legal status to report landing fish etc., I'll get into some detail about how Cape Ann Fresh Catch actually works, from the dock to your plate in a later post. But I will say that I have been around fish for years and one thing you can always tell right away about a fish facility is how it smells.

The best fish handlers and processors do not smell 'fishy' they smell like the ocean. They do not smell 'chemically', they smell clean. I walked into Turner's and could tell right away that they keep a clean shop. Everything smelled nice. The fish that you see in the video were so fresh they had an almost sweet smell.

A couple more notes before the video:
- The sanitizing system Turner's uses is state of the art. Jim explains it in the video, but the real important thing to understand is that using this technology, Turner's does not use any chemical sanitizing agents.
- Turner's also has a retail store and restuarant in Melrose, please support great local businesses like these that are making a commitment to helping fishermen and consumers get really fresh seafood, and making a long term commitment to sustainable fishing by supporting the small scale fishermen and fishing families who have a generations long commitment to our local seafood.

And lastly, Turner's along with Cape Ann Fresh Catch, the Gloucester Fishermen's Wives Association and the Northwest Atlantic Marine Alliance will be hosting tables at the upcoming Boston Local Food Festival. We'll also be doing cooking demonstrations and hosting a Seafood Throwdown cooking competition between to local celebrity chefs, Didi Emmons from Haley House and Jason Bond from Bondir Restaurant this Saturday Oct 2. The Seafood events will be on the Seaport Blvd end of the festival in Boston.

Now on to the video:

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