Aaron Orlowski

Aaron Orlowski

Contributing Editor

Aaron Orlowski is a California-based journalist who writes about fish (both farmed and wild), food, the environment and science. Before settling on the West Coast, he worked for newspapers in North and South Dakota. In his spare time, he attempts to salvage untested recipes in the kitchen.

Published on
September 7, 2017

The seafood industry has largely stayed out of negotiations for a new international treaty that would allow for marine protected areas (MPAs) on the high seas, said the leader of the main industry organization participating in the treaty process.

The legally binding United Nations treaty currently under development would be signed by countries under the 1982 United Nations Law of the Sea treaty. In July, the years-long treaty process took a majorRead More

Published on
August 11, 2017
Caleb Otto

Palau, a Pacific island nation of just 21,000 people, is on the front lines of the fight against illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing, but the small country has only one patrol boat – with two more on the way – to cover hundreds of thousands of square miles of ocean. So the country has turned to innovative partnerships, including working with groups that track illegal fishing using satellite-based ship location data.

CaleRead More

Published on
August 9, 2017

An Oregon, U.S.A.-based seafood and sushi restaurant group has started an initiative to calculate and publish the carbon emissions caused by its products – and has committed to buying carbon offsets to compensate for those emissions, the company announced last week.

The Sustainable Restaurant Group’s carbon calculator appears to be the first in the industry to focus on seafood sustainability. Other efforts have calculated a restaurant… Read More

Published on
August 8, 2017

Trawling accounts for 20 percent of global fish landings, provides food for millions of people and is among the fishing methods most criticized by conservationists.

A new study that puts numbers to the impact of trawling, however, finds that some types of trawls cause significantly more damage to the seabed than others. Additionally, the most common type of trawl – otter trawling – has a lower environmental impact.

Fishermen use botto… Read More

Published on
August 3, 2017

The United Nations has advanced a step closer to an international treaty to protect marine life on the high seas, with an aim of setting up a mechanism for creating marine protected areas in areas beyond national jurisdictions.

International waters outside countries’ exclusive economic zones make up 60 percent of the ocean and cover almost half of the surface of the earth. The waters are rife with marine life, including many threatened spec… Read More

Published on
July 27, 2017

Industrial fishing fleets dump nearly 10 million metric tons of fish back into the ocean every year, or almost 10 percent of the global catch, according to a new study.

In the early 1950s, fish discards were much lower, at five million metric tons (MT) per year. They rose to a peak of just under 19 million MT in 1989 and have since gradually dropped to the current nearly 10 million MT.

Discards result from poor fishing practices and inadequate ma… Read More

Published on
July 10, 2017

In the tropical waters of Indonesia and the Philippines, fishermen strike out in small, un-decked wooden boats, powered by 10- or 30-horsepower engines. Regulations forbid a few practices, such as fishing in marine protected areas and using dynamite or cyanide to catch fish, but the rules are limited and enforcement can be spotty.

A few decades ago, the waters were bountiful, and a short fishing trip in near-shore waters would yield a few dozen k… Read More

Published on
June 26, 2017

U.S. dietary guidelines call for Americans to eat more fish. But fishery managers don’t usually manage stocks with this goal in mind, according to a recent study.

Fisheries policy is essentially part of the nation’s food policy, which affects public health. So, fishery managers, whether they mean to or not, affect the availability, access and distribution of healthy seafood for Americans nationwide.

Despite this intrinsic link, fisher… Read More

Published on
June 22, 2017

Nearly half of California’s salmon species will be extinct in 50 years if current trends continue, a new study has found.

The fish face myriad threats. Climate change will warm the cold-water streams on which spawning fish rely, while dams block passage to headwaters. Ocean acidification will disrupt marine food webs, while hatchery-raised fish threaten to interbreed with wild fish, weakening future populations.

If nothing is done to rever… Read More

Published on
June 21, 2017

By analyzing the elemental makeup of shrimp flesh, a group of researchers has been able to identify the shrimp’s country of origin, according to a recent study.

The analysis technique – called elemental profiling – could, with further refinement, aid importers, customs officials and retailers as they seek to trace seafood back to its source.

In the study, a group of scientists led by the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) differentiated … Read More