Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Get your Gooseberry Cod from the Goose

The delicately flavored Gooseberry Cod was almost lost to the world 20 years ago. These Atlantic cod took their common name from the Newfoundland cove where they had lived even before a permanent cod fishing community developed on the cove's shores in 1864.

As the cod grew, so did the fishing business, but the bottom line out lapped nature destructively. International factory trawling and a no-limit mentality brought the cove to a nearly fishless and dangerously deadly state in the early 1990s.

Today only local fisherman who held a license prior to the collapse of the cove are allowed to catch the cod that are returning to Gooseberry Cove. This small cooperative of fishermen take from the water only a few fish and only those that exceed age and weight limits. Their trap catch fishing method has the most minimal effect on the Cove's overall environment and avoids "bycatch" so wildlife that shouldn't be taken from the water isn't. They fish seasonally, use wind power, and convert the cod liver oil into biofuel.

As the Cove heals, the local community has found ways to work with tradition and restore with their resources, not exploit them. The Gooseberry Cod's story is just another example of why we should eat it to save it.

The Gooseberry Cod is coming to the Goose this Friday! It's a large flake fish with a mild and flavorful fillet that lends to grilling, baking, and broiling. Call or email soon so we know to save you some.

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