Oliver Fredriksson

Oliver Fredriksson

Editor at FoodUnfolded, working to bridge the gap between science, food systems, and the public. Focussed on marine resources, with a background in marine science and aquaculture

Location Bergen, Norway

Activity

  • Very interesting to hear a first hand account of your dealings with MSC. Thanks for sharing your insights @ChristineGrosart !

  • On the topic of water or brine injection, you can find a quick read up on how much the EU tolerates for different seafood products below. In short, between 5-20% of weight is permitted depending on product. :

    https://www.cbi.eu/news/european-importers-eu-authorities-increase-focus-mislabelling-added-water-seafood

  • Regarding the injection of water in seafood, I agree that perhaps the issue was overstated and could be misleading to some. This is certainly not what we wish to convey as not all frozen seafood is subjected to this. To be clear, the issue is most commonly reported throughout Asian seafood processing regions, with only some of the products destined for...

  • @ErikaValicka You make some valid points here, particularly about remaining critical to potential biases. I'd even gladly second that and similarly suggest that we all read everything considering not only what's in front of us, but also the context of the writer (or speaker). Whilst not always a negative thing, bias definitely influences almost all things...

  • Agreed on all fronts @NealBaker !

  • @NealBaker Unfortunately not, at least as far as I'm aware. Given the complexities around where and how fraud occurs, accounting for it when setting individual fish stock quotas would be incredibly difficult to do with any real accuracy. If we were to create a 'buffer' in allowable catch (TAC) to account for and offset any estimated fraud, it would be near...

  • Great to have your insights throughout the course @JohnCope ! You shared some great points and reflections that made for some intriguing conversations. Glad to hear you've taken something away from it all.

  • Glad to hear this Michael and thanks for all your valuable additions to discussion along the way !

  • Thanks for sharing!

  • @GlynisKossew Yes, Glynis, it is a form of harmful algal bloom and it's definitely advisable to steer clear of shellfish until environmental authorities have given the green light to eat local shellfish again. Even still, eating local shellfish harvested yourself is always going to be a gamble as some toxic algae can remain in the shellfish for months...

  • Labelling is a hugely contentious topic for that very reason @JohnCope. How can consumers possibly know what to choose from when a can of fish is stuck with multiple eco-labels, each with its own set of guidelines and criteria (some far weaker than others). I think it's been an effective tool worthy of support thus far, but I dare say that it has reached some...

  • @PeggyBanks Here's to hoping Peggy! It's like most things though really, a lot comes down to how it's made/grown/produced rather than the product itself. There are really well managed farms out there that prioritise fish health and low ecological impacts, and there are those who aren't doing as much. Best way to ensure you're doing the right thing is to eat in...

  • @PeggyBanks That's a great question Peggy! The short answer is, not really. Given the quantity of fish grown in farms, feeding that many fish the same diets as they would eat in the wild would place enormous pressure on their feed source. If we take salmon as an example, a wild salmon can require around 10kg of wild sourced natural feed to grow a single...

  • @GlynisKossew On the money Glynis! You'd be amazed at the extent to which farmers select and adjust proportions of certain nutrients or ingredients in feed, as well as conditions and physical operations, in order to keep fish from being stressed. The more stressed they are, the more they'll succumb to disease, parasites or illness - something every farmer...

  • If you're interested to read more on shellfish toxicity, here's a short explainer I wrote a while back that goes into the causes and ways that farmers avoid selling toxic/bacterially loaded product: https://www.foodunfolded.com/article/toxicity-in-shellfish-what-is-shellfish-poisoning

  • @LeonardDöhl @MichaelOguekhian Challenges and opportunities for sure. In terms of using fish sewage to feed other fish, most trials using dried-treated fish waste in feed have resulted in lower growth rates and health in fish, so it's not likely this is the best option if these businesses are to make money. When it comes to using other livestock manure in...

  • Correct, John. All the more reason to aim for less processed or direct trade whenever you can.

  • The local 'fish & chips' shop is often a common offender - whether mislabelled or simply not labelled. I've had many a similar experience growing up in Australia where on multiple occasions, 'barramundi' was quite clearly something else (likely pangasius). We've had stingray listed as scallops, and probably the most suspect of the lot, 'flake' - a word used to...

  • @SandraCooper If you can't manage to find any markets or restaurants that support bycatch options, your next best option would be to source locally. Local or direct sourcing ensures you will at the very least have transparency about where your fish is coming from and when, giving you the power of knowledge before making your decisions on which fisheries you'd...

  • @SandraCooper Great to hear that you're open to trying something new! Unfortunately, you're not alone in the struggle to identify or source bycatch. There is no universal site or resource that highlights those selling or sourcing bycatch in different regions (would make a great App!). It's generally not a large market and your options will vary depending on...

  • @LeeScott It's certainly disheartening to think that 'following the science' would be considered such an unreasonable order of business. Seems a logical approach to prioritise the sustaining of a resource that brings national economic benefit, rather than prioritising the financial benefit before the resource itself. Serendipitously, it seems as if our past...

  • @JohnCope I've heard too many anecdotal examples of political overriding in the marine space to count John. It's a huge issue and we need to move beyond the politicians vs scientists hamster wheel we've been running on for so long. Misaligned policy and a general lack of prioritisation (not always maliciously intended) is arguably one of the greatest...

  • @LeeScott Great points made here Lee. Realistically, it may take a redefining of policy frameworks if artisanal or small scale are to survive and thrive amongst the industrial giants out there. Carving out and place-holding space in national quotas specifically for small scale or economically incentivising catch based on boat size and type is potentially a...

  • @HamishMorrison Agreed, there's a lot left unsaid for the impacts of climate change. There are countless studies weighing on the side of climate change being a key driver of ecological collapse in our marine spaces. But as @AntonyCoutinho and @LeonardDöhl mention, Pauly's focus on the impacts of fishing pressure is not necessarily misplaced as it's a directly...

  • @AnaCristinaCosta Great point Ana! There's a need for more bridging organisations that can link those from within industry to those outside. Creating open and transparent industries where access to knowledge is accessible to everyone can only lead to faster rates of improvement - better policies, more informed consumers, technological solutions more aligned...

  • @MaartjePronk On your first point, I'm interested to hear your thoughts on how would you see this bottleneck being solved? It's a great point you raise about meeting demand and opens up a relevant discussion around who should bear the cost of providing fishers with options. Should support come from the bottom up, driven by an adjusted consumer demand (we pay...

  • @MichaelOguekhian Global warming and many other climate change associated impacts can (and should) be considered when it comes to barriers facing sustainable fisheries (and food production in general). Even our best management of marine resources is based on data that analyses the impacts of stressors placed on a fishery - from humans, other predators, and the...

  • @IsabelLakeman This is certainly the case for much of Europe, but not for everywhere. No-take MPAs do exist both in Europe and abroad - though they only account for a very small % of total European marine protected area. The management and broader functionality of these MPAs is definitely a controversial topic - especially given the slightly illusionary title...

  • Perhaps even more surprising, is that more than 90% of all people employed in global fisheries or related activities work in small-scale fisheries. This means that less than 10% of people are producing around 50% of our total production. Gives you an idea of the efficiency and scale at which these mechanised large-scale fisheries operate at.

  • For the most part you are correct there. Local, artisanal or subsistent small scale fishers are far more likely to feel bought in to the consequences of their actions. In fact most successful small scale fisheries management tends to be centred around creating community led fisheries management, which broadly involves empowering fishers themselves to manage...

  • Well said, John. It increasingly feels as if these environmental considerations only take the spotlight when the impacts of repeated neglect flow into more 'public' or visible sectors of our lives. It's why we're working to increase awareness and why so many are out waving signs in the hope their voices will be heard and the issues addressed. But I tend to...

  • There are a few of these plant-based 'seafood' companies out there doing exactly that! A few below:

    https://www.wildtypefoods.com

    https://plantbasedseafoodco.com

  • Bycatch is a great option as it supports the value in a more diverse range of species and takes pressure off the select few that we consistently target. If you have the option to support bycatch fisheries, I'd encourage you to try.

    The yellowtail kingfish grown on land-based facilities is an interesting concept - it's also been done with a number of other...

  • If fisheries are managed according to scientific recommendations, which not all of them are, then the amount of fish they target from each species or 'stock' should allow fish populations to regenerate and maintain a healthy level. There are however two issues here. Firstly, we only have solid data for around half of the world's fisheries, which means at best,...

  • Here's the link to the Good Fish Guide for Herring: https://www.mcsuk.org/goodfishguide/species/herring/

  • Hi Glynis!

    Herring can be a sustainable choice as it's a relatively small fish with a fast reproductive cycle - meaning it can regenerate populations fast (more sustainable to fish than slower growing species). In saying that, it's important to know that there are many different 'stocks' or separate populations of herring around the world, and not all of...

  • They are absolutely stakeholders! In fact many marine protected areas (MPAs) - essentially a defined area of water that is managed according to certain rules - still permit certain activities within their boundaries. In some cases, MPAs still permit certain mining operations or energy producing companies to operate within them. It's a controversial approach...

  • A great point, Ana. There can be no successful transition of an industry without the careful consideration of culture and context for those impacted. This is largely why there is no 'one size fits all' solution to fisheries management and why it is so crucial to involve actors from within the regions themselves when discussing solutions that affect them. In...

  • @wagdialqadase Illegal Unregulated and Unreported (IUU) fishing is still a very real issue and one that is incredibly tough to solve. With around 4 million vessels roaming our seas, it is near on impossible to manage the exact location and real time practices of every ship - something that's even harder for poorer regions without the resources or maritime...

  • That's great Ana!

    Reach out if you have any questions or would like additional information for your students or teachers.

  • There's plenty more I'd like to add, but I think you'll find some content later in the course that will help to answer some of the questions you pose more thoroughly.

    Let me know if you have any more questions and I'd be happy to chat!