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Marine charity gives sustainable seafood shoppers a fishmonger in their pocket

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Restaurants to recipes, sustainability to seasonality in a simple to use App 

The Marine Conservation Society (MCS), the UK charity which works to ensure consumers, restaurants and food industry buyers only choose fish from sustainable sources has released its most informative seafood App yet and says it hopes the simple advice will clarify what, for many, is a highly complex issue.

The Good Fish Guide App (free on both iPhone and android) is a great catch for anyone who wants to make sure the fish they are buying comes from sustainable fisheries – where stocks are either holding their own or increasing.

“Making sure the fish you are buying is as sustainable as possible, in season and big enough to have reproduced makes the whole issue a bit of a minefield. Many fishmongers and fish counter staff have some of the information customers require, but not all. The Good Fish Guide mobile app has all the answers right at your finger tips. Whilst looking at fish on the counter you can, with a few taps and swipes, be sure your fish supper is as sustainable as possible,” says Bernadette Clarke, MCS Good Fish Guide Programme Manager.

The App lists fish alongside their MCS Fish to Eat or Fish to Avoid rating – red, green or amber (eat only occasionally).

The main role of the MCS Fish to Eat and Avoid lists, which can also be found at www.goodfishguide.org, is to identify for consumers fish from currently healthy fisheries or farms, the fish to eat, and the fisheries consumers should be avoiding, the one’s that are overfished and poorly managed.  By changing its ratings in line with the latest International Council for the Exploration of the Sea stock and other advice, MCS tries to ensure through public awareness that consumers make the right choices and popular species don’t drop to worryingly low levels.

But there’s far more to choosing sustainable fish and now the App boasts regular contributions of new seafood recipes from top chefs and celebrities. The recipe is displayed so the fish chosen are always in season and rated 1-3. There’s also a size guide to help people spot immature fish that are being sold before they’ve had a chance to breed. And information on labelling will help you indentify the best eco-labels for fish and the information retailers and fishmongers need to be supplying to allow consumers to make informed choices.

Diners can find restaurants that claim to have great sustainable credentials on an easy to use map where MCS reveals what they think about the eatery’s sustainability along with the venue’s Fish 2 Fork sustainable seafood restaurant rating.

MCS sustainable seafood work is supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery. Clara Govier, Head of Charities at People’s Postcode Lottery says “It is great to see a whole range of new resources giving people the power to make their own choices on which seafood to eat. The new App is really exciting, giving instant advice on what to eat and how to cook it, whether you’re shopping for the family in the supermarket or looking for a place to eat out. I’m delighted that players of People’s Postcode Lottery are able to support this initiative.”

For more information, see www.goodfishguide.org.

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Frontline workers honoured with free dive trip to Yap

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The remote island of Yap in the Federated States of Micronesia is among the few places in the world that remains free of Covid-19 thanks to its ocean border and a strict travel ban that has kept its residents safe.

Nonetheless, Yap has been affected, too. As one of the world’s premier, award-winning destinations for divers, this paradisiacal location in the western Pacific Ocean has had no outside visitors to its rich shores and reef for nearly a year. But while there may be no virus, the island hasn’t been cut off from the economic impact experienced around the globe.

Manta Ray Bay Resort and Yap Divers by A. Tareg

That didn’t stop Bill Acker, CEO and founder of the Manta Ray Bay Resort and Yap Divers, from doing something, though.

Last March, soon after the island went into lockdown, Bill began to realize the effect of the virus on daily life beyond the island. “Yes, we are closed, have no divers, had to send our employees home and prepare for difficult times,” he said. “But we’re lucky in that we have, for the most part, avoided the human suffering and death this pandemic has caused.”

Thinking about the problems faced by his family business, they paled when he compared them to those endured by the healthcare workers who have been fighting selflessly around the clock for months on end for the well-being and lives of others.

“One evening, while checking the news online, I saw pictures of frontline workers who were tending to desperately ill and dying people when families and friends could not be with their loved ones. It was heartbreaking,” he added.

The next day, a meeting was held with the resort’s staff and Bill invited suggestions for ways they could do something to honor healthcare workers. The result was the idea to award twenty divers who are working on the frontline to save other’s lives during this pandemic while risking their own, with a free week at the resort.

Manta ray, Manta birostris, gliding over a cleaning station in M’il Channel, Yap, Micronesia by David Fleetham

Divers around the world who had been guests at Manta Ray Bay in the past were invited to submit the names of candidates for the award by December 31, 2020. “We received nominations for 126 individuals from as far away as Germany, the U.S., Australia and Canada,” he said. “It was not easy choosing the winners but our committee of staff members took on the job and selected the 20 finalists.”

“While trying to choose the people to reward for their hard work during this Covid-19 crisis,” Bill added, “by reading the nominations we saw that every one of the nominees was doing things above and beyond the call of duty. Sadly, we don’t have the finances to offer over 100 free weeks in Yap, but we do want to recognize the contributions all of them are making to our world. So, we are offering the rest of the nominees a free week of diving in Yap which includes room, hotel tax, airport transfers, breakfast, diving and Wi-Fi.  The only requirement is that they travel with at least three other people and stay in two rooms or more.”

“We do not yet know when Yap will open its borders,” said Bill, “but when it does, we will welcome these important guests to Yap to relax and dive with the manta rays and the other beautiful denizens of the ocean surrounding our island home. They are the true heroes of this devastating, historic time and we look forward to honoring them with a well-deserved dive vacation.”

Watch out for our exclusive trip report from a healthcare worker from the UK who is one of the 20 to have been awarded this amazing dive trip!

For more information on Manta Ray Bay and Yap Divers visit their website by clicking here.

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Dive Training Blogs

Dream Dive Locker Build Out. Part I: Demolition (Watch Video)

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It’s finally here! Time to start building the greatest dive locker the world has ever seen! Part I: Demolition! #dreamdivelocker

This is the first of a series of videos showing the evolution of building out my dream dive locker. My dream dive locker needs to be dive gear drying and storage, dry storage, workshop, office, editing suite, You Tube studio and classroom. That’s a lot of functions for a small space!

The first step is planning out the space and demolishing the laminate flooring. Then I taped up the walls to get a feel for the space. We have a lot of work to do!

But finally we will have a purpose built space to house all of our dive equipment! Subscribe to our channel to follow our progress! 

Thanks for watching, Team!

James


Subscribe here: http://bit.ly/DiversReady

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Call Diverse Travel on 01473 852002 or email info@diversetravel.co.uk to book your spot!

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