BC Seafood Expo
Mona Day – Topix
June 27, 2017
British Columbia is a major producer of high-quality seafood, harvesting over 100 seafood species.
BC seafood represents over half of Canada’s aquaculture production, and it is so important to its economy that BC has proclaimed June as BC Seafood Month. A highlight of this month is the BC Seafood Expo for the seafood trade and industry. The Expo features speakers, talks, keynotes, workshops, exhibitors, and networking events to help shellfish researchers, producers, exporters, distributors, educators and associations keep abreast of innovations, challenges and opportunities in the industry.
The Expo features speakers, talks, keynotes, workshops, exhibitors, and networking events to help shellfish researchers, producers, exporters, distributors, educators and associations keep abreast of innovations, challenges and opportunities in the industry.
Two keynote addresses included long-time sustainable seafood ambassador Ned Bell, Ocean Wise executive chef at Vancouver Aquarium speaking on Farmed & Wild Fish, It’s All Seafood; while broadcast personality Terry O’Reilly spoke on Marketing BC Seafood.
Ten different Expo sessions featured over 30 speakers; topics included ocean acidification and climate change, transport logistics, food and traceability, seafood and public health, research projects, new cultured species, human resources and training, and marketing.
Booths showed new products, supplied information from government agencies and consumer watchdogs, displayed educational materials, fostered learning at interactive booths; and of course, served up food products.
There were plenty of networking opportunities to mingle, make connections, and talk shop at lunches and coffee sessions. The BC Shellfish Growers Association reception featured a screening of the film Ebb and Flow about the history of oyster farming on the West Coast. The BC Seafood Expo reception for International Seafood Buyers featured over a dozen stations where international and regional celebrity chefs prepared local seafood, pork, bison and beef. Proceeds raised funds for the Comox Valley Community Foundation.
Several production facilities offered tours and open houses. They included Salish Sea Foods operated by the Komoks First Nation Economic Development that processes some of the best Pacific salmon, BC oysters, finfish, clams, and halibut.
The BC Salmon Farm Tour included a boat ride across the Johnstone Strait with its beautiful scenery and wildlife sightings.
The Fanny Bay Oysters company in the tiny oceanside community of the same name renowned for its oysters produces fresh and individually quick frozen shucked Pacific oysters and Manila clams.
The Macs Oysters Beach Tour included a beach walk on Ships Point showcasing farming practices and foraging for local delicacies.
The Manatee Royston Hatchery emphasizes practices that focus on preservation of the environment along with sustainability in producing geoducks, sea cucumbers, scallops, and oysters.
Others tours include a half or full day wildlife tours of Salish Sea and Desolation Sound cruising bays, local inlets, and tidal rapids in search of marine life.
Crabbing Experience is a three-hour boat trip that takes you through historic sites while you learn to catch and prepare crab. Crab traps are onboard in the hope of catching Dungeness crab; if you are lucky to find legal keepers, the boat chef will prepare them as part of your trip’s meal.
For more information or to register online visit BCSeafoodExpo.com