Editor’s picks: Progress report

By

Steven Hedlund

Published on
October 21, 2009

Here’s a look at this week’s must-read SeafoodSource news stories, commentaries and market reports:

• “We can’t wait,” a Plitt Co. executive told SeafoodSource. “The unknown has been difficult.” It’s been five months since American Chartered Bank placed the Chicago seafood distributor into receivership after accusing two former company executives of fraud and misappropriating funds. After a five-day delay, the Plitt Co. will be auctioned off on Monday. “Plitt Co. auction delayed” was this week’s most read SeafoodSource story.

• Apparently, new U.S. Food and Drug Commissioner Margaret Hamburg was serious in August when she pledged to make regulatory enforcement an agency priority. On Wednesday, the FDA accused Registry Steaks & Seafood of Bridgewater, Ill., of short-weighting shrimp and substituting northern rock sole for grouper. The Better Seafood Bureau, which lauded the move, has been working with the FDA to expose cheaters, and the effort is beginning to bear results.

• SeafoodSource ran two commentaries this week, and both drew a lot of reader interest. In “Back to the basics,” SeafoodSource Contributing Editor Mike Urch talked about what he learned at the eight annual Value-Added Seafood Conference in London in late September, while, in “Chamber music,” SeaFood Business Associate Editor James Wright explained the complexity of the sustainability issue at the Sustainable Seafood Multi-Stakeholder Summit in San Francisco

• About 385 miles south of San Francisco in Los Angeles, the Monterey Bay Aquarium held a press event unveiling its “State of Seafood: Turning the Tide” report, which details the progress made in protecting ocean ecosystems, better managing fisheries and fish farms, and advancing the sustainable seafood movement. In addition, Ed Cassano, director of the aquarium’s Seafood Watch program, told SeafoodSource that Santa Monica Seafood of Rancho Dominguez, Calif., has pledged to buy the majority of its seafood from sustainable sources within the next five years.

• Also on the sustainability front, SeafoodSource Contributing Editor Chris Loew wrote about Kona Blue Water Farms’ efforts to improve its sustainability score. The Hawaiian company’s farmed yellowtail, which it markets as Kona Kampachi®, earned a “good alternative” rating by the Seafood Watch program, while its Japanese and Australian competitors received an “avoid” rating.

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