It’s getting competitive to hob-nob with seafood startups and industry innovators.
They're increasingly stealing the spotlight from the day-to-day quota and price concerns as big seafood production questions loom. Perhaps most pressing: an added 27 million metric tons of aquaculture production is needed to maintain the present level of per capita fish consumption in 2030, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
Enter Fish 2.0 founder Monica Jain, who began her international seafood business innovation competition Fish 2.0 in 2013. Since then, participation and interest has exploded.
Consumers who would never buy something generically labeled meat or cheese are often stuck at almost that level of information when it comes to seafood. The opaque origins and processing of many seafood products can hide a host of problems, including species fraud, illegal fishing, human rights abuses in the labor force, and pollution—as well as the resource depletion that accompanies these issues. A 2014 report in Marine Policy estimates that over 20 percent of wild-captured seafood imported into the U.S. comes from illegal fisheries.
But this is quickly changing, as an increasing number of innovators in the seafood industry create new ways of making the system more transparent and seafood products and processes more traceable.
Pensacola Bay Oyster Co. won the top prize winner at this year's Innovation Awards.
"It feels fantastic," said Donnie McMahon, president and co-founder of the company. "It really does. It was an honor to be selected and a great honor to move the company ahead in what we're trying to do in Northwest Florida."
The Innovation Awards, held this week at the Hilton Pensacola Beach hotel, are a competition that serves as a funding opportunity similar to the TV show "Shark Tank." Divided into four business categories — post-revenue, pre-revenue, veteran and student — 61 startup companies applied to this year’s competition. Judges whittled down the applicants to the best three in each category, and those companies presented their business plans Thursday.
The East Coast was literally built on oysters. At the peak of their production as a food source, these shellfish were so plentiful from the Gulf Coast to New England that discarded shells were crushed and used to pave roads. Oysters kept bays and waterways clean—Chesapeake Bay residents didn’t need to treat or filter their water. A 1913 National Geographic article proclaimed them “the world’s most valuable water crop,” cultivated as a year-round, dependable and inexpensive protein source. About 150,000 people in 35 countries worked to produce “the most popular and most extensively eaten of all shellfish.”
The situation more than a century later is quite different. Oysters remain desirable, but populations have been decimated. The Gulf of Mexico has just 10 percent of its peak oyster population, and Chesapeake Bay is down to a mere 1 percent. The situation has been described as dire by many locals, who’ve seen dredging, overharvesting and disease destroy oyster habitats.
Encouraging collaboration between scientists and business has always been a prime mission at the MARBIONC Center. We were pleased to recently host an event aimed specifically at small start-ups in the seafood and aquaculture industries, which of course ties in directly with our marine science research.
The Fish 2.0 organization’s first regional workshop in the southeastern United States was held here, on our CREST Research Park campus, March 15 through 17. Nearly two dozen fledgling enterprises from a 12-state region attended, making connections and gaining skills needed to attract investors and grow their businesses.
Entrepreneurs with shellfish-related ventures in the 12-state Southeastern U.S. region have until April 29 to apply for a competition intended to give winners a toehold in the sustainable seafood market.
Fish 2.0, founded by executive director Monica Jain, uses a competition platform to connect seafood innovators, investors and industry experts so that promising ventures can find funding and knowledge resources.
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Indonesia has made progress in its fight against illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (IUU) practices in its waters in the last three years, but it still has work to do, according to Her Excellency Minister of Maritime Affairs and Fisheries of Indonesia, Susi Pudjiastuti.
At the sixth European Tuna Conference in Brussels, held on the eve of Seafood Expo Global, Pudjiastuti shared her experiences of attempting to get the Indonesian seafood industry back on track after decades of mismanagement, in which overfishing by foreign vessels, including many illegal operators, had pushed its fisheries to the brink of collapse.
IT'S that time of the year again when entrepreneurs from the seafood industry can gain further investment for their companies through the Fish 2.0.
The Fish 2.0 is a sustainable seafood business competition supported by the Pacific Trade and Invest Australia.
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.
Undercurrent News: Fish 2.0 2017 competition opens West Coast track with investment event in Seattle
Fish 2.0: Fish 2.0 2017 Competition Opens West Coast Track with Investment Event in Seattle
WECT 6 News: City council gets update on UNCW's innovation center
Wilmington Biz: Fish 2.0 Workshop Draws Seafood Industry Startups
UNCW News: CREST Campus, MARBIONC to Host “Fish 2.0” Workshop Promoting Sustainable Seafood
Houma Today: Workshop, competition offered for shellfish-related businesses
NC IDEA: NC IDEA Foundation Awards Ecosystem Partner Grant to Marine Bio- Technologies Center of Innovation
WilmingtonBiz: UNCW Announces Shellfish Workshop, Initiative For Businesses
Fish 2.0, the global competition and network for sustainable seafood businesses, is kicking off its new West Coast track April 4 with a free daylong workshop and networking reception in Seattle, the event organizers said in a release.
The competition is "focused on engaging investors, sparking relationships among entrepreneurs, and building connections within the region’s seafood industry", the release said.
The workshop, open to seafood entrepreneurs from the West Coast and Alaska, provides coaching on how to communicate persuasively with investors and seafood buyers.
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Oysters, crab, shrimp, lobster and scallops were on the menu at this week’s Fish 2.0 South Atlantic & Gulf Coast Shellfish Workshop, hosted by University of North Carolina Wilmington at the university’s MARBIONC facility.
Fish 2.0, founded by executive director Monica Jain, uses a competition platform to connect seafood innovators, investors and industry experts so that promising ventures could find funding and knowledge resources.
[Click here for the full article]
April 4 workshop and reception for Alaska, California, Oregon and Washington seafood businesses focuses on building networks and sparking interest from investors and buyers
The intensive workshop, open to seafood entrepreneurs from the West Coast and Alaska, provides coaching on how to communicate persuasively with investors and seafood buyers. It also gives participants opportunities to meaningfully connect with other innovative seafood businesses that could be key partners. To attend, entrepreneurs must register online and be invited.
The Geomar acquisition is only the beginning of seafood investments the Walton family-backed holding company Pescador Holdings has its eye on.
The investors behind the deal view this as a beginning step in the execution of core firm goals, and they have the backing to execute them; a link to one of the wealthiest families in the world.
Suddenly, oceans are everywhere.
The run-up to the big United Nations Ocean Conference in June began with last week’s preparatory conference and the first voluntary commitments to meeting Sustainable Development Goal No. 14: Conserve and sustainably use the oceans, seas and marine resources. The drumbeat continues this week with the World Ocean Summit in Bali, where investors are assessing the scale of the ocean opportunity.
Startups in seafood and aquaculture technology raised $193 million in 2016, a 271% increase on the $52 million raised across both 2014 and 2015, according to AgFunder research.
Investment in seafood-related startups grew in 2016 as investors and entrepreneurs are starting to slowly wake up to the huge opportunity the market presents.
Congressman Seth Moulton, D-Salem, has been a strong advocate for the North Shore and New England fishermen whose bottom lines he says are hurt by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's imposed catch limits on them.
Federal catch-limit regulations, he argues, are burdensome and often put in place based on outdated data that doesn't actually comport with what's happening with fish stocks, given migration patterns and ocean currents, among other changing variables from year to year. The result has spawned a longtime bitter battle between NOAA and fishermen.
"The reality is the fishermen very strictly have to follow NOAA's estimates when the fishery has been all over the map," said Moulton. "Some years have been abundant while others not so much."
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Tucked away in a warehouse just south of downtown Greenville, marine biologist Valeska Minkowski has been quietly incubating a food source that’s typically found thousands of miles away off the coast of California: Pacific white shrimp.
In June, Minkowski started an indoor shrimp farm called Urban Seas Aquaculture. It’s a big change of pace for the scientist who once spent her summers reintroducing long-spined sea urchins to coral reefs off the coast of Florida.
Now Minkowski is part of a small, yet growing group of American farmers trying to feed the country’s seemingly insatiable appetite for shrimp and other seafood, without damaging coastal ecosystems and using harmful chemicals.
Convocatoria organizada por Endeavor y Fish 2.0 busca conectar a startups con inversionistas.
Con el objetivo de aumentar la red de contactos de los emprendedores del rubro pesquero, Endeavor Chile, como partner regional de Fish 2.0, invita a las empresas ligadas a esta industria a postular al concurso que se realizará en noviembre próximo en la Universidad de Stanford, California. />
Fish 2.0 busca conectar a negocios sustentables del mundo pesquero con inversores y expertos de la industria, con el objetivo de entregar una asesoría y obtener acceso a nuevo capital o socios.