Food and Water Watch: Eat Your Invasives!
Food and Water Watch’s Smart Seafood Guidelines have long helped fish fans steer clear of unsustainable and unhealthy seafood with their "Dirty Dozen" list. This summer’s guide, however, tells us to go ahead and feast . . . on invasive species.
With high reproductive rates and no natural predators, invasive species often outcompete native ones, reducing diversity, lowering habitat value, and sometimes speeding extinction rates. From the voracious Asian carp overtaking America’s Great Lakes to the poisonous lionfish in the warm waters off Florida's coast, scientists are working to stave off the onslaught. And with globalization, the factors contributing to the spread of invasives are only increasing.
While these animals are not too often put on plates, FWW hopes that restaurants and families will catch on, eat up, and help keep the creatures' booming populations in check. To start the trend, Food and Water Watch teamed up with the James Beard Foundation at the Seafood Guide's release party to showcase delicious (and safe) ways of cooking your local invaders. You can find the complete guide online; it allows you to search by taste preference and region. To stay informed during shopping trips or dinners out, print a smaller version.
If only we could always eat our problems! We're still waiting for a cookbook that includes "Oil Spill and Vinegar Salad Dressing" or "Pine Beetle and C02 Souffle."