Your Relationship With Fish Is About to Change

World Positive
  • Monica Jain
  • March 15, 2017

A wave of change is upending the seafood business as we know it. Here’s what it means for everyone from investors to fish stick aficionados.

It’s 2027, and we’re no longer gorging ourselves on shrimp. Or tuna. Or salmon. Not because they’ve disappeared from the oceans or we’re appalled by how they’re produced, but because we’re eating so many other delicious fish from land and sea — like porgy, dogfish, lionfish, barramundi, and others we’ve yet to meet.

Our old favorites are still around. We've stopped loving them to death and have figured out how to both scale up fish farms and produce fish-free feeds for aquaculture so that we can grow low-impact, high-quality seafood.

We also know exactly what fish we’re eating and where it comes from — sometimes we even know the fishers by name — so we can make confident choices based on nutrition and sustainability factors. Fishing communities are healthier too: they serve local as well as export markets, and new seafood products boost their economic base. Unsustainable seafood just doesn’t sell: consumers walk away from it the way they avoid foods with transfats today.

This scenario might sound ridiculous to people focused on the historically slow rate of change in an industry with a complex and often low-tech global supply chain. People assume that change will continue to plod along. I don’t believe that.

The pace has already picked up dramatically. Governments, big industry players, entrepreneurs and investors are focused on seafood sustainability like never before. Several drivers are kicking in at once:

  • We’re realizing that we’re going to run out of food if we don’t find alternative supplies and environmentally sound production methods. Seafood is a healthy, high-quality protein source. It tastes good and we can grow it sustainably.
  • People are more interested in where their seafood comes from and what’s in it. And they increasingly see quality and sustainability as linked product attributes — I hear this from seafood buyers all the time.
  • Emerging technologies that will clear up seafood’s murky supply chain or allow aquaculture to flourish are being developed by multiple players, big and small.
  • Investors are realizing that the seafood market is huge, and they’re seeking opportunities to make change in it. Feed for farm-raised fish alone is a multibillion-dollar opportunity.
  • Over the past five years, as I’ve built the Fish 2.0 business competition, I’ve seen an overwhelming number of creative ideas bubbling up with highly qualified entrepreneurial teams behind them. Their innovations, combined with powerful social and environmental forces, are creating a new world both above and below the ocean’s surface.

How seafood is like lettuce

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What people are saying about Fish 2.0

  • Kelly Harrell - Alaska Marine Conservation Council
    For those in the fisheries world, Fish 2.0 has quickly become the go-to place for those interested in advancing cutting-edge business models focused on the triple-bottom line of social, environmental, and economic impact.
    - Kelly Harrell, Fish 2.0 2015 Finalist (USA)
  • Gary Beatty - Inland Shrimp Company
    People found us through the media around Fish 2.0 – people who want to have shrimp locally have gone out of their way to contact us."
    - Gary Beatty, Fish 2.0 2013 Semi-finalist (USA)
  • Emmanuelle Bourgois - FairAgora
    Fish 2.0 competition has been a unique learning experience. It shaped the idea from a concept to a robust business model, boosted confidence in my entrepreneurship skills and is the real starting point of this amazing and innovative adventure.
    - Emmanuelle Bourgois, Fish 2.0 2015 Competitor (Thailand)
  • Fish 2.0 is the place to
    learn more about what kinds of technology and business advances are occurring in the seafood industry.
    - Investor, Fish 2.0 2015
  • Andriet Tilfas - Hapmak Market
    It helped me connect with a lot of new business people around the world. Not only to help with our small scale in a remote island but to expand services because there are a lot of opportunities out there.
    - Andriet Tilfas, Fish 2.0 2015 Competitor (Micronesia)
  • Alan Lovewell - Local Catch Monterey Bay
    Fish 2.0 is a great way to expand your network. We learned about other fish businesses and opportunities for collaboration--that exposure is very hard to do on your own.
    - Alan Lovewell, Fish 2.0 2013 Finalist (USA)
  • Ed Robinson - Acadia Harvest
    All the people we dealt with on the Fish 2.0 team were great to work with. We’d have no hesitation to do it again.
    - Ed Robinson, Fish 2.0 2013 Semi finalist and 2015 Finalist (USA)
  • Roxanne Nanninga - Tru Fish
    This was a great opportunity to pitch to a very relevant group of people. I made some very valuable connections.
    - Roxanne Nanninga, Fish 2.0 2015 Finalist (USA)
  • David Stover - Bureo
    It makes you kind of step back and look at what's actually going on, ... question what path are you on, where are we going ... in that sense, it's an extremely valuable process to kind of put things on paper and take a look at it.
    - David Stover, Fish 2.0 2015 Finalist (Chile)
  • Fish 2.0 offers
    a unique mix of innovative business ideas and people who have the influence to make them succeed.
    - Dick Clime, CEI Maine
  • This is the most professional event I’ve attended in this sector.
    - Investor, Fish 2.0 2015
  • David Walfish - Ho'olou Pacific
    The Fish 2.0 organizers have done a fantastic job creating the world's first fishing and aquaculture business competition. Our advisors and the webinars have been top-notch, and the amount of interest and number of investors Fish 2.0 has attracted is incredible.
    - David Walfish, Fish 2.0 2013 Third Place Winner (USA)
  • Gary Ullstrom - Kuterra
    It’s not just a seminar, it’s the real thing – you’re pitching to real people with real money.
    - Gary Ullstrom, Fish 2.0 2013 Finalist (Canada)
  • Brett Haywood - Sea Quest Group
    Helped us look within and be able to convey our positive impacts, whether its socially, environmentally or resource based, and convey this to our markets and partners.
    - Brett Haywood, Fish 2.0 2015 Finalist (Fiji)
  • Hoyt Peckham - SmartFish
    It changed the way I prepare for all sorts of investor interactions, and it greatly improved our success.
    - Hoyt Peckham, Fish 2.0 2013 Semi-finalist (Mexico)
  • Dr. Karsidete Teeranitayatarn - Green Innovative Biotech
    This made my company grow up and served as a springboard. We received interest and collaboration from around the world, including Fiji, Northern Canada, Alaska, Marshall Island, and venture capitalists from Silicon Valley.
    -Dr. Karsidete Teeranitayatarn, Fish 2.0 2015 Finalist (Thailand)
  • Alfred Kalontas - Alfa Fishing
    Fish 2.0 helped me understand my brand better. It helped me refine my business structure to represent my business brand.
    - Alfred Kalontas, Fish 2.0 2015 Finalist (Vanuatu)
  • Sherry Flummerfelt - Monterey Bay Fisheries Trust
    I made some excellent connections, learned so much, and feel like our organization has grown considerably as a result of participating in Fish 2.0.
    - Sherry Flummerfelt, Fish 2.0 2015 Finalist (USA)
  • Diane Durance - Harvest Food & Fisheries
    As a semi-finalist in 2013, I experienced first-hand how important it is to get your venture in front of investors who are knowledgeable and interested in your field. Fish 2.0 is the organization making that possible for entrepreneurs in aquaculture and sustainable fisheries.
    - Diane Durance, Fish 2.0 2013 Semi-finalist (USA)
  • Dane Chauvel - Organic Ocean Seafood
    Fish 2.0 helped us grow our business, but more importantly, it helped us optimize our business. We are doing more, and doing it better. I don’t believe we would have gotten here as quickly if we had not gone through the Fish 2.0 planning exercise.
    - Dane Chauvel, Fish 2.0 2013 Finalist (Canada)
  • Mike Betts - AgFunder
    Fish 2.0 provided a huge amount of value to the investor community in really getting exposure for and curating companies, that is super valuable. It's one of the best I have been to in the food and ag sector. Everything from the quality of the attendees and companies, the content, the engagement.
    - Mike Betts, AgFunder (USA)
  • Beau Seil - Unitus Impact
    We believe that creating sustainable fisheries will have long-lasting impact on ensuring and improving the livelihoods of large populations in the developing world.
    - Beau Seil, Managing Partner, Unitus Impact
  • Margot Kane - Calvert Foundation
    Fish 2.0 helps fill a critical missing part of the ecosystem around financing sustainable fisheries and aquaculture. We look forward to connecting this effort to our thousands of investors motivated by positive social and environmental change.
    - Margot Kane, Calvert Foundation and Fish 2.0 2015 & 2013 Judge
  • What I liked about Fish 2.0 was
    the high-quality content and very well curated line-up of companies.
    - Investor, Fish 2.0 2015
  • Kit Barron - CapLog Group
    Fish 2.0 takes the fish by the fins and creates a much needed mechanism through which the right industry experience, innovative thinkers and financial backing can come together to move new ideas in seafood to market.
    - Kit Barron, CapLog Group, LLC and Fish 2.0 2013 Advisor