Wild Hoh River Steelhead on the Menu

Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by TomB, Feb 19, 2005.

  1. TomB

    TomB Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2004
    Messages:
    1,631
    Likes Received:
    67
    Location:
    seattle,wa
    EDIT (3-1-05): Here are pics of the lower Hoh river that I have been given permission to post by the original poster on another board. See the devastation first hand. In the first pic the fishermen are slapping their jetsleds with paddles to make noise to scare fish into their nets. Apparently they circled the area doing this trying to prevent fish from hiding and escaping.



    Original message:
    Hey guys.....I'm out in Maine, otherwise I would be all over this, but my brother said that Wild Hoh River Steelhead was on the menu last night at Cutters restaurant in Seattle....Anybody wanna protest or at least complain?
    -Thomas
     

    Attached Files:

  2. miyawaki

    miyawaki Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2002
    Messages:
    3,292
    Likes Received:
    976
    Location:
    Kent, Washington, USA.
    Thanks Tom, I'll see what we might organize tonight in Monroe over dinner and a lot of alcohol.

    Leland.
     
  3. Sky Dunphy

    Sky Dunphy New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2004
    Messages:
    15
    Media:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Good looking out Tom.

    When I saw your post I called immediately. I talked to a manager and his defense was this: 1)It's approved by the FDA 2)It's a limited season with a limited catch and 3)It's enjoyed by many of our guests. I have to say that last one really got to me.

    I think we ought to organize something bigger but we should at least start with phone calls. Even though the manager was defensive I heard it in his voice that he was not genuinely committed to the killing of wild steelhead. He seemed more to just doing his job. I think more calls will get to him.

    Cutter's Bayhouse
    (206) 448-4884
     
  4. miyawaki

    miyawaki Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2002
    Messages:
    3,292
    Likes Received:
    976
    Location:
    Kent, Washington, USA.
    A few of us in the WSC are looking into this. I believe this is a lot bigger than just Cutter's. Cutter's is owned by Restaurants Unlimited, a very large Seattle-based company that also owns Stanley & Seaforts in Tacoma, Palomino and Palisades in Seattle and a lot of other restaurants throughout the country. Now lets assume they have a very good fish-buyer who struck a good price for the Hoh River wild steelhead. I've got to believe the contract is for a goodly amount of fish that is also on the menu at their other high-end restaurants.

    Stay tuned for a call to action for all those that want to put an end to the killing of wild steelhead!

    Leland.
     
  5. Chris DeLeone

    Chris DeLeone Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2004
    Messages:
    541
    Media:
    11
    Likes Received:
    102
    Location:
    Monroe, WA
    Let's educate a few of their customers by causing a small, classy disturbance outside of their door and see how fast they take it off the menu.

    Target the other sites and put pressure on them every year. No market, no dead wild fish.

    I'm in!

    DeLe
     
  6. TomB

    TomB Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2004
    Messages:
    1,631
    Likes Received:
    67
    Location:
    seattle,wa
    I already had my mom call them and say that she had a great dinner (not the steelhead) but that she would never be returning if she saw that they remained on the menu.
    -T

    time to increase the heat guys...come on....only 4 responses.......you all should be angry. There wouldnt be a fishery if there wasnt a market!
     
  7. Steve Buckner

    Steve Buckner Mother Nature's Son

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2003
    Messages:
    1,350
    Media:
    45
    Likes Received:
    12
    Location:
    Toledo, Wa. on the banks of the Cowlitz
    Home Page:
    It's an outrage and the most unfortunate thing is that most people don't give a shit. I was just talking to a friend of mine who said he had eaten steelhead on a menu at McCormick & Shmick's. I asked if it was listed as wild and he didn't remember but it wouldn't surprise me if many of the big restaurants around serve it. It would be great to bring the unwanted attention to all restuarants throughout the country that serve threatened fish on their menus, which from what I understand, is getting to be most fish.
     
  8. TomB

    TomB Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2004
    Messages:
    1,631
    Likes Received:
    67
    Location:
    seattle,wa
    Maybe a "letter to the editor" in one of the local papers is in order. It could be signed by a ton of people too.
    -Thomas
     
  9. ray helaers

    ray helaers New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 31, 1969
    Messages:
    1,088
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    .
    Hoh River steelhead is regularly available this time of year in regional restaurants and fish markets. They are carrying it at the organic food co-op I belong to on Capitol Hill. Their defense is that they support tribal sovereignty and economic initiative, yadda yadda, which goes to show that the issue is complicated by any number of factors. One thing to remember is when steelhead or any salmon is labled as wild, that usually just means that it isn't farmed. When I asked our fishmonger whether the steelhead was actually wild or hatchery, he didn't seem to know what the hell I was talking about.

    The interesting thing is I never see Quinault or Quillayute steelhead anywhere. I'm not sure what's up with that. One of the challenges to meet here is that the tribes generally try to market steelhead as a responsibly, sustainably harvested product (taking a cue from the Copper River chinook and sockeye tribes), and places like my co-op are inclined to swallow that marketing without question. Now the thing is that Copper River salmon is harvested pretty responsibly, so the claim cannot be credibly dismissed out of hand. If the Hoh River steelhead on those plates is indeed irresponsibly harvested (I am inclined to believe it is; if it's wild, the Hoh suffers from chronic underescapement and if it's hatchery that has its own myriad problems), you'll need to make that case and have evidence beyond "harvesting and selling steelhead is bad."
     
  10. Ken Hunter

    Ken Hunter Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2003
    Messages:
    155
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Shoreline, Wa, USA.
    Wild steelhead get no respect in our media. They all want to "save the salmon" and our politicians stand on that soap box when ever they can.

    The selling of wild fish in the restaurants and places like the Pike Place Market would provide a great backdrop for a protest. I'm sure a lot of interested protesters could be rounded up from the fishing and related groups.

    Wouldn't it be great if everytime the media and our politicians talked of saving the salmon they would add "and the wild steelhead".

    Ken
     
  11. TomB

    TomB Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2004
    Messages:
    1,631
    Likes Received:
    67
    Location:
    seattle,wa
    You are absolutely right Ray...but that is the point....while I would rather see stores sell wild alaskan fish from well managed runs than anything else, I don't mind if they sell hatchery fish from here, or healthy runs from here, but selling depressed runs of wild native fish, and selling farmed fish I cannot deal with.
    -Thomas
     
  12. Kalm

    Kalm Member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2004
    Messages:
    446
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Cheney, The Dry Side
    I recently purchased some "wild dungeness crab". My butcher informed me that within the next year the FDA will force all meat to be labeled as wild or farmed, and also list the country of origin. He said nothing of wild or hatchery salmon. They may not have to make that distinction.
     
  13. o mykiss

    o mykiss Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2001
    Messages:
    1,334
    Likes Received:
    204
    Location:
    .
    A month or two ago there was an article in the S.F. Chronicle about how great Quintault steelhead roe was and which high falutin' restaurants in the Bay Area served it. It was full of all sorts of muddle-headed garbage about how responsible the Quinaults were, implying that runs were healthy, etc., etc. I wrote an e-mail to the editor telling them their reporter was woefully misinformed about a lot of things in the article, and surprisingly got a letter back from the reporter acknowledging some of my points but making no apologies for helping market the destruction of OP wild steelhead. She made all the same arguments that Ray is encountering at his co-op, about tribal sovereignty, what good stewards they are, etc., etc., blah, blah, blah. Here is part of her response:

    "Should steelhead be harvested at all? We all draw the sustainability line at different places. I tend to draw mine where sustainability includes the
    livelihoods of fisherpeoples. The history of U.S. policy toward fish and
    fisheries has been terrible, and steelhead trout may be as badly managed
    as most others. However, here, I draw the line at and trust the
    monitoring accomplished by the tribe itself. The Quinaults have been in
    the business of sustaining themselves through fishing for generations.
    They are both monitoring and hatching steelhead."


    I especially loved that last sentence! This lady and the general population know nothing about the state of wild steelhead runs, and in particular they can't distinguish between a wild fish and a hatchery fish. They figure if you can buy something in a restaurant, at the Pike Place Market (where they're selling it right now) or at a grocery store, everything must be okey-dokey. Organizations that do understand what is going on with wild steelhead ought to do something like the "Dolphin Safe" campaign that the tuna industry was hit with. Maybe we could mimic the anti-fur campaign and go throw a bucket of fish blood on the fishmongers at Pike Place Market while a bunch of tourists stand around gawking. ;)
     
  14. Ken Hunter

    Ken Hunter Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2003
    Messages:
    155
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Shoreline, Wa, USA.
    The bucket of blood would sure make good TV at dinner time.

    I think the concept is great. Something to get the Wild Steelhead issue rolling off the lips the media and politicians. The "Dolfin Safe" example is a good one. We can all enjoy tuna but within limits. The biggest impact would be at the beloved Pike Place Market.

    Ken :beer2:
     
  15. alpinetrout

    alpinetrout Banned or Parked

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    Messages:
    3,906
    Media:
    294
    Likes Received:
    73
    Location:
    Hiding in your closet
    "Dolphin Safe" is a bit of a scam unto itself. All that did was trade dolphin caught in nets for sharks and sea turtles caught on longline hooks.
     
  16. salt dog

    salt dog card shark

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2005
    Messages:
    2,306
    Media:
    36
    Likes Received:
    2
    Location:
    Edmonds WA / Mazama
    I've got to wonder if the Quinault wild steelhead runs are being protected by the Quinault tribe as well as the Makah tribal fishery is protecting the Chinnook?
     
  17. o mykiss

    o mykiss Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2001
    Messages:
    1,334
    Likes Received:
    204
    Location:
    .
    True enough, as far as most tuna on the market is concerned. I am partial to St. Jude Albacore, which is troll caught in the Pacific. A lot more expensive than Chicken of the Sea, but it is about 10 times better tasting and harvested in a much more responsible manner. I guess the point I was trying to make is that some sort of campaign to educate the public could have an impact. Better than doing nothing, I suppose. . .
     
  18. alpinetrout

    alpinetrout Banned or Parked

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    Messages:
    3,906
    Media:
    294
    Likes Received:
    73
    Location:
    Hiding in your closet
    Education is definitely an issue... I wish the troll-caught albacore was available in more stores just so the general public might notice that it exists. Although it's Sea of Cortez focused, www.seawatch.org has a ton of good info as well as some photos and video that will make most people question where their fish comes from.
     
  19. Zen Piscator

    Zen Piscator Supporting wild steelhead, gravel to gravel.

    Joined:
    May 7, 2004
    Messages:
    3,076
    Media:
    551
    Likes Received:
    13
    Location:
    Missoula, MT
    Home Page:
    Im going to have a little chat with the resturant when my father gets home. Long distance doesnt work on our normal phones, gotta do it through cells :mad: . Tom, howbout you put together a draft of the letter. Or someone else who is well versed in writing may want to do it. I would volentear, but err....i suck in the grammer and spelling department. My words tend not to flow as nicely as most.

    Peace,
    Andy
     
  20. Bob Triggs

    Bob Triggs Your Preferred Olympic Peninsula Fly Fishing Guide

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2003
    Messages:
    4,084
    Media:
    1
    Likes Received:
    796
    Location:
    Olympic Peninsula
    Home Page:
    When I first moved out here I was walking through Pike Place Market and saw a sign that said :

    "Wild Steelhead $3.99/lb"

    I was amazed, shocked...I was new here.

    I told my friends back east all about it and they bet me fifty bucks I was jerking them around. I photographed the sign and collected fifty bucks.

    When I asked them why they sold Wild Steelhead at Pike Place Market they said:

    "These are native caught fish and are wild, the healthiest fish you can eat".

    Thus implying some kind of spiritualized "mojo" inherent in the flesh of Native caught wild fish. As if those fish contained no toxins or there were no ESA Endangered or Threatened wild fish issues here.

    Public education is the only hope.
     

Share This Page