Fed by Blue crafts fresh approach to educating consumers about seafood
A new project founded by three industry veterans has given itself the ambitious goal of getting people to rethink their opinions about seafood.
Fed by Blue, an international campaign to promote responsibly produced blue food, was formally launched on Tuesday, 15 March 2022, at the SXSW Conference in Austin, Texas, U.S.A. The campaign was established by Kvarøy Arctic Chief Marketing Officer Jennifer Bushman, Erol Foundation Managing Director Jill Kauffman Johnson, and BioMar Global Marketing and Branding Director Katherine Bryar.
“The vision of Fed by Blue is to increase transparency and access to responsibly produced blue food while educating people as to their nutritional, economical, and environmental benefits,” Bushman told SeafoodSource in an email. “Fed by Blue is working to support restorative paths forward through actions that prioritize ocean conservation and responsible harvesting and/or rearing of blue foods.”
Also announced today at SXSW is the development of a docuseries with celebrity chef Andrew Zimmern, who has previously worked with Verlasso and Kvarøy, and television writer and producer David E. Kelley, the founder and chairman of Riverence, a Filer, Idaho, U.S.A.-based trout-farming operation. The series will air in 2023 and has the initial title – subject to change – of “Eating Up the Oceans: How Do We Save Our Seas?”
“It’s time to tell the stories of the inspiring visionaries, the water farmers, fishers, scientists and activists that are already creating pathways to restore abundance to our oceans,” Kelley, a 13-time Emmy Award winner, said in a press release.
“Each episode poses a global question concerning the world’s historic and growing reliance on marine resources, particularly as a food source. High-profile experts and advocates contextualize the high stakes, confront pressing global issues, and reveal the many surprisingly hopeful paths we can take to a restorative future,” Bushman said. “A multi-distribution approach will be undertaken to maximize reach across North America and the world with both linear television and streaming services.”
Wrapped around the docuseries will be a three-year public information campaign, led by Fed by Blue, that will stretch across social media, public events, conferences, and an educational program complete with classroom curriculum.
“We are working on a broad, science-based communications initiative with the goal of providing and disseminating information on the blue food systems, with the mission of improving ocean protection, responsible ocean production, and [achieving] equitable human prosperity,” Bushman said.
Fed by Blue is guided by the extensive research undertaken by The Blue Food Assessment, a joint initiative of the Stockholm Resilience Centre at Stockholm University, the Center for Ocean Solutions and Center on Food Security and the Environment at Stanford University, and EAT, a nonprofit dedicated to food-system transformation. The campaign acknowledges the impact that overfishing, habitat loss, and climate change are having on global fisheries, and seeks to find a path through these problems.
“The fact is, we created these issues. So, how do we now learn from our past mistakes and empower people to create and choose restorative paths forward?” Bushman said. “We want to activate through messages of hope, rather than doom-scrolling.”
A central goal of Fed by Blue will be public education – especially for young people – to augment their food literacy, with a focus on the nutritional, economical, and environmental benefits of responsibly produced blue food. Part of that effort will entail increasing the public exposure of responsibly produced blue food products – “from water to the point of sale, through mass media content, community and educations tools," according to Bushman.
“We want to broaden access [to the blue food economy] by educating people as to why responsibly raised blue food is so valuable and nutritious, how to find and recognize sustainable sources, and how to demand change on a local level,” Bushman said.
The organizers of Fed by Blue recognize that other organizations are doing overlapping work, Bushman said. They hope to work together when and where possible, leveraging their marketing savvy and connections with social influencers.
“The mission of Fed by Blue is to provide and inspire visionaries, thought leaders, ocean lovers, activists, early-adopters, foodies, and consumers with the knowledge and materials to help protect and participate in a responsible blue food system. We are working to enrich the existing conversations with valuable, eye-opening educational resources,” Bushman said. “This is unique particularly because our plan is to partner with and amplify other organizations’ work while harnessing the power of mass media to change the narrative.”
Bushman said the Fed by Blue movement has set the ambitious goal of pushing the entire globe toward a more-sustainable and more-equitable food system.
“How did we come to this place of the consumptive entitlement of wild ocean resources when we farm everything else in our food system? Fed by Blue aims to reimagine and transform blue food systems through demand for transparency, empowering people to make responsible blue food choices,” Bushman said.
Photo courtesy of Fed by Blue