28 March 2013

SASSI training at the Aquarium

Interested in being seafood-savvy? Want to become a fish fundi? Then join us for the SASSI Sustainable Seafood training course on 15 April!

The Southern African Sustainable Seafood Initiative (SASSI) was started by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) to address the problem of dangerously depleted fish stocks and an ecosystem tipped out of balance enough to threaten the future existence of a number of key species. According to a 2010 study, 85% of the world’s fish stocks are either over-exploited or exploited to their maximum. But there is another problem: globally, it is estimated that approximately a quarter of what is caught in fishing gear is thrown back, often dead, and wasted – a problem known as bycatch.

Seafood is a popular and healthy source of natural protein – seafood has become the most traded global food commodity in the world. There has also been an explosion in the popularity of formerly “exotic” cuisine such as sushi, driven on by the trendsetters of the culinary world.

What are less widely known or publicised are the conservation issues surrounding seafood species, and the fact that many of our seafood sources are harvested at unsustainable rates, and that in many cases, the activity of fishing may cause unacceptable damage to the oceans’ ecosystem with potential long-term negative effects.

If we want to continue to enjoy the variety and diversity of seafood to which we have become accustomed for decades to come, we need to start making informed choices right now.

The SASSI Sustainable Seafood interactive training course is specifically aimed at restaurants involved in the seafood industry, who are part of or wish to support SASSI’s Restaurant Programme.

Photo courtesy Dr. RawheaD

Course Content

The course is designed to equip restaurant owners, managers, head chefs and any interested parties with information and skills on how to develop a sustainable seafood strategy in their business, and will include sections on:

  • The state of our marine resources in South Africa
  • Understanding the problems related to overfishing
  • Environmental concerns around aquaculture (fish farming)
  • SASSI’s sustainable seafood solutions
  • The benefits of sustainable seafood and how to implement SASSI’s guidelines in your business
  • SASSI updates

At the training, new Supporters will receive a host of SASSI materials. These include a practical guide to sustainable seafood (a manual for the course), as well as an interactive SASSI DVD to assist restaurants with in-house training of their wait- and kitchen staff, pocket cards, fish fact cards and certificates for their respective restaurants. Existing supporters are encouraged to bring their manual along for reference.

Who should/can attend?

SASSI Supporters are required to attend one of these courses annually. For those who have already attended training, it might be of interest to come again as we will discuss issues around the new list, and the listing process. We encourage participants to send a maximum of two representatives (managers/owners/head chef) to the course. A training fee of R250.00 per person (payable on the day) will be charged for non-SASSI supporters/participants.

Course details

Date: 15 April 2013
Time: 09h00-12h30 (tea will be provided during a mid-morning break)
Venue: Meet in the foyer at the Two Oceans Aquarium by 08h45
RSVP: sassi@wwf.org.za (before 11 April 2013)

Read more about the Two Oceans Aquarium’s involvement with SASSI here.

Stay in touch: for daily Aquarium updates, follow us on Twitter (@2OceansAquarium) and become a fan on Facebook.

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