Monday,12 March,2012 08:26:34
Leaving my Melbourne home early on Friday morning I head to the airport with all the usual things hanging over the brain. Have I done this, have I done that? Am I organized? Have I got all the things I need?
Too late! We are on the journey from Melbourne to Brisbane to Los Angeles to Boston.
Meet up with the suitcase again and get the shuttle bus and immediately start meeting people who are destined for the seafood show.
There is camaraderie – we do not know each other but all of a sudden there is a bond of sorts. We are linked by our seafood connection.
Door to door journey is 27 hours and there is a 16-hour time difference and it comes as a shock that on the second day I am going to lose another hour due to daylight savings.
Sleep came and went and now even though it is IBSS minus 1 there is plenty to do. The opportunity to sit in on the Global Aquaculture Alliance standards committee meeting is maybe not everyone’s idea of “what to do on your first day in Boston” but I am on a steep learning curve and it is great to see the enthusiasm of all engaged.
It is great to see the number of operations increasing through the GAA program and the progress of the other standards that will add to the overall portfolio offer. I see standards as being an essential element in continuous development in the industry and it is important to verify those standards in order to create confidence.
Integrity in our industry is essential to take away confusion and enable us to build the industry on solid foundations and GAA, and organizations like them, are doing a great service in enabling this opportunity.
Meanwhile outside this meeting the IBSS is coming together, the stands are being tidied, the floor is being cleaned, the signs are going up, the staff are going through their induction processes, there are signs the show is not far away.
I catch with some colleagues after the meeting and we start chatting about what we have been doing since we last met. We have much in common about our drive of the seafood and health issues and we agree to keep the communication routes open and we move to the NFI Clam Chowder Reception at the Westin Hotel.
The place is packed and the chowder and drinks are flowing. They are flowing so much that in a mix-up red wine gets spilt and just my luck that I am in the pathway. We ignore the issue and get deeply engaged in networking, working the room, enjoying the feeling that we are surrounded by people with a love of seafood.
The chance presents to have a quick meal and over dinner I hear about the life cycle of the P.vannamai being created in Crystal River, Florida in 1972 and it being more about accident than planned and a fascinating story evolves (it will become an article down the track).
On the way back to the hotel I learn from the cab driver about some of the history of Boston and in particular about the hotel where I am staying. His last words were “be careful of the ghosts.” I laugh it off and head for the hotel lobby and get in the lift. Two ladies also travel in the elevator and as they leave they say “good luck on the 10th floor that is the one that is haunted.” Fortunately despite the scaremongering sleep comes quickly and the day passes into history.