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Children To Learn About Sustainable Fish

by the Fish Site Editor
09 June 2011, at 1:00am

UK - The Marine Management Organisation (MMO) has announced that Billingsgate Seafood School has been awarded 70,000 from the European Fisheries Fund (EFF) to help teach school children in London and the South East about sustainable alternatives to popular fish products.

It is hoped more than 10,000 primary school children will be given the opportunity to try underutilised fish species through the new Extended Education Programme, which will run over the next three years in Greater London and the South East region.

A series of up to 150 Fish to Food events are being planned as part of the programme, which will be offered free to schools. These will see a local fishmonger or retailer working with a chef to prepare dishes for the class to taste and will also raise awareness of the health benefits of eating seafood.

The events will be supported with promotional material, including teaching resources and a DVD which will feature South East fishing fleets and demonstrate each stage of the production and retail process for fish. Family education packs will also be produced, which it is hoped will encourage over 7,500 families to try products such as mussels, coley, crab, sardines, mackerel and squid.

Adam Whittle from Billingsgate Seafood School said: We have always believed in encouraging young people to eat fabulous seafood.

These events will not only open the eyes of young people and families to the wide selection of European farmed and wild fish available, but also how easy it can be to prepare fish dishes. We will raise awareness of the alternatives to common choices such as tuna, salmon, cod, haddock and prawn and show there are other healthy ways to cook it aside from battered and fried.

While investing in their own health the young people will also be supporting the seafood industry.

We are really pleased to have been awarded the funding as without the support from the EFF it would have been very difficult to set up this project in the current economic climate, Mr Whittle said.

Catherine Murphy, programme manager for the European Fisheries Fund in England, said: Billingsgate School has a proven track record in this area and in granting them this money weve shown were confident that they can help take the sustainable seafood message to tomorrows generation of buyers.

Theyve shown us theyve carefully considered how this promotional activity will reach a large audience. For example were looking forward to seeing the organisations accompanying marketing work helping to raise awareness of sustainable fish products more widely in the community and boost sales of these in the local area.

The EFF and MMO are providing 40 per cent of the funding towards the project, which will cost a total of 175,000.

The funding is the third grant Billingsgate Training School has been awarded through the EFF. Previously they received over 10,000 towards improving their website and upgrading their knife skills training room.

the Fish Site Editor