SeaShare turns $1 donations into 8 seafood servings at food banks
December 15, 2016
This is Fish Radio. I’m Laine Welch – One dollar equals eight seafood servings at food banks. More on Sea Share after this –
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For 22 years fish taken as bycatch in Alaska has been donated to hunger relief programs instead of being thrown overboard as required by law. More than 120 Alaska boats are part of the program – including every boat in the Bering Sea pollock fishery and more than half of the Gulf trawl fleet.
It’s due to the efforts of Sea Share, a Seattle-based nonprofit that has built a nationwide network of fishermen, processors, freight, storage, packaging companies and financial donors to get fish to the needy.
“You can participate any way – you can supply seafood or services or you can help fund those programs. It’s a growing network and we can accommodate just about anything. Our partnerships are pretty unique. We take raw fish and turn it into finished meals. There is no other entity working on that in the US.”
Jim Harmon is Sea Share director of what is now one of the largest protein donors in the nation – 220 million seafood servings and counting.
Today, bycatch makes up about 20 percent of the donations; the rest is donated by seafood companies which this year has totaled nearly two million pounds of halibut, salmon, pollock, canned fish and more. Over 1.7 million pounds has gone to 28 states Outside; nearly 200,000 pounds has gone to hungry Alaskans.
“ With the help of the CG and some other imaginative things we’ve reached 36 different communities in Alaska. That’s expensive so we’re having an end of year fund raiser right now to try to generate some more income. A lot of non profits, including ours, historically get about 40 percent of our income in the last six weeks of the year.”
Sea Share is expanding its outreach to the wider public with a video about the importance of eating seafood. Kate Tomkins is director of development –
The Share Your Plate promotion is a program we started with a group of seafood companies this year who wanted to get together and help us make a video to get the message out about Sea Share to the more general public and it is really focused on the importance of seafood nutrition and the lack of access many hungry Americans have to seafood. Seafood makes up only two percent of protein sources at food banks across the country.
A donation of just one dollar translates to eight seafood servings for the less fortunate.
Harmon says it’s not just about feeding people, it’s about feeding them well.
Fish Radio is also brought to you by Ocean Beauty Seafoods. Ocean Beauty has contributed over 10 million meals to the U.S. Food Bank network, and is committed to ending hunger in America. www.oceanbeauty.com