The Oregon Department of Agriculture, in collaboration with Oregon Sea Grant and the seafood industry, has launched an initiative to promote Oregon seafood in the state and in its neighbor to the north, Washington.
The push comes as consumers are preparing meals largely at home and are consuming substantial amounts of seafood.
The campaign hopes to prop up the state’s industry, which saw a “sharp decline” in commercial demand as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
The #EatOregonSeafood initiative will partner with chefs, bloggers, and social media influencers to share recipes, photos, and instructional videos online. These participants, along with cooks from Oregon’s fishing families, will present their tips for making seafood at home from June until August.
“We want to make it easier for people to buy and prepare the local, fresh seafood that we are so fortunate to have in Oregon,” said Oregon Albacore Commission and Oregon Salmon Commission Executive Director Nancy Fitzpatrick. “Since many of us are still preparing most of our meals at home, it’s a good time to try a new recipe or type of seafood you may not have eaten in the past. Not only will it benefit our fishing community, but seafood has tremendous benefits for people looking to eat nutritious and delicious food at home.”
In addition to preparation and cooking videos, the campaign’s website will also feature tips on purchasing seafood as well as processing, smoking, and freezing it at home. In addition, site will allow users to search for stores in the area where they can purchase local seafood.
“There is a common misperception that seafood is extremely difficult to make at home,” said Newport Fishermen’s Wives President Taunette Dixon, who is co-owner of a fishing vessel. “But seafood and seafood dishes are actually easy and quick to prepare. It can seem intimidating at first, but once you try it, you’ll see it’s not all that complicated. In fact, seafood is my go-to for simple, healthy family meals and special occasions.”
Dixon and Fitzpatrick both vouched for the use of frozen seafood as well, which takes worrying about seasonality out of the equation, pointing out that Oregon seafood is typically frozen right after harvest.
Photo courtesy of Alexander Lukatskiy/Shutterstock