Maine campaign spotlights underutilized species
The Gulf of Maine Research Institute’s (GMRI) “Out of the Blue” campaign touting underutilized species is working, the Portland, Maine-based organization said on Friday.
Currently, Atlantic mackerel is being featured as part of the latest “Out of the Blue” campaign. Once the 10-day promotion began, fishermen started targeting the species in response to the increased demand, said Sam Grimley, GMRI’s sustainable seafood project manager. Historically low prices, coupled with unseasonably warm waters, had cast some doubt on mackerel’s availability leading up to the promotion, he explained.
The first “Out of the Blue” campaign spotlighted redfish; the species was so popular with diners throughout Maine that a number of Portland restaurants, including Fore Street and The Salt Exchange, kept serving it after the promotion ended, according to GMRI.
“Consumers play an important role in building markets for underutilized Gulf of Maine species,” said Jen Levin, GMRI sustainable seafood program manager. “We want consumers to participate in the promotions so that they can try something new, but we hope they continue to ask for these species long after the promotion has ended.”
Three additional “Out of the Blue” promotions are scheduled, with the next to occur from 28 September to 7 October; the featured species hasn’t been announced yet.