The B-C Spot Prawn Festival is underway as chefs and foodies kick off the seafood’s short season.
Chef Ryan Bissell chairs the festival, and says it’s about promoting sustainable fisheries, and locally sourcing fresh food.
“Because the season is so short, it’s such a well managed fishery. We really try and promote the season when the prawns are actually live. So we don’t want to over-fish these products, we don’t want to have prawns that are basically fished to death over a couple of years.”
Bissell says spot prawns show the value of directly connecting consumers to producers — to keep a resource healthy.
“You don’t want to buy asparagus in November and you don’t wanna buy spot prawns in November when they’re not in season.”
Bissell says his goal is to promote a well managed harvest, and the idea of eating local and in season.
It’s a model he says works to keep a healthy environment — and economy.
“Down here at the wharf, buy live prawns directly from the fishermen in the boats. And you know, that supports those guys and helps them pay their mortgage and make sure the boats are running all right. And well, that’s a big component to it.”
Seafood lovers can now find the prawns at restaurants around the city.
The annual season lasts just six to eight weeks a year.