Some B.C. restaurants removing wild salmon from menu, bringing in farmed fish from New Zealand

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Political statement over overfishing.

The Globe and Mail has spoken to a handful of restaurateurs in BC, Canada, who are removing wild salmon from their menus due to overfishing.

At the end of June, the Canadian government announced that it was closing 60 per-cent of commercial salmon fisheries. This was in a bid to “stabilise and conserve wild salmon populations”, according to Minister of Fisheries Bernadette Jordan. The closings will last “multiple generations”.

The restaurants PiDGiN, Vancouver’s Burdock & Co, Joe Fortes Restaurant and more are all looking for alternatives.

It’s not just restaurants in the province. Jenice Yu, owner of the storefront and wholesale distributor Fresh Ideas Start Here said that Barkley Sound sockeye is “very skinny and doesn’t have much retail value”.

The restaurateurs are not interested in the farmed Atlantic salmon in their backyard. PiDGiN owner Brandon Grossutti has been bringing King salmon fish that is farmed 12,000 kilometres away in New Zealand, from Glory Bay king salmon.

“They shut down commercial fishing for a very long time until their stocks came back to a sustainable level. They’ve got this great aquaculture society. And we are using this beautiful product to congratulate them on how well they’ve managed their fisheries for the last 20 years,” said Grossutti.

Ora King salmon New Zealand King Salmon is considered an alternative to locally farmed Atlantic salmon according to Vancouver sushi restaurants Miku and Sashimiya.

“It’s also less expensive and more consistent – arriving fresh three times a week – than land-based farmed salmon,” wrote Globe and Mail.