There is archeological evidence that shows humans have been consuming fish for over 40,000 years. It is safe to say that the ancient Egyptian civilizations would not have thrived as they did without the abundance of fresh fish from the Nile River. The founding fathers of America ate primarily seafood, as they settled mostly near large bodies of water. Oysters were a favorite of Martha Washington, our first First Lady. In today’s world, the Seafood industry has grown to a $365 Billion dollar a year industry. With human populations exploding, seafood consumption is only going to grow over time.
Fishmongers or seafood specialists, have been the liaisons between the fishermen and the consumer for eons. The fishmonger’s guild was established in the City of London by a Royal Charter granted from Edward I when he became king in 1272. Over the years, due to their importance and influence, the guild grew very large and wealthy. The Fishmonger’s guild even had its own army of over 1000 mounted knights. The guild still exists to this day as one of the Great Twelve City Livery Companies.
In 1822, The Fulton Fish Market was opened as a wing of the original Fulton Market in the lower east side of Manhattan. The market quickly became a destination for fishermen of the Atlantic to unload their catch. This created an enormous boom in the commercial fishing, wholesale and retail industries. Shipments of fish began to make its way inland via horse and carriage. This is where we also saw an influx of seafood consumption in restaurants all over the country.
Fast forward about 200 years and The New Fulton Market is second in size only to Tokyo’s Tsukiji fish market. Annual sales surpass $1 Billion annually and are expected to reach $2 Billion in annual sales by 2022.
The need for Professional Fishmongers in the USA is greater than ever. Consumers want real, trustworthy information, they want fresh Seafood and they want a relationship with their seafood provider. Healthy minded individuals are realizing the benefits of eating seafood but they are overwhelmed with false information and are often misled by the large scale retailers who keep their focus on profit margins rather than knowing their product and their customer.
Hudson Valley Seafood is a company that cares about its customers. We are open to any and all citizens of the Hudson Valley and beyond to discuss their specific seafood questions and concerns.
A Fishmonger’s Responsibility In 2015
Today’s Seafood industry is very different when compared to that of previous generations. We haven’t been very kind to our oceans over the years. Overfishing, lack of regulation, destructive methods of catch and lack of public knowledge have been the main contributors that have brought us to the state our ocean is in now.
Many species populations have been brought to critical levels. Some oyster and clam grounds have been decimated. In the 19th century America and Europe were in an oyster craze. The prized oysters out of Great South Bay, Long Island were not only consumed by NYC aristocrats but also shipped to Europe where they were enjoyed just as much. Unfortunately, the little guys were enjoyed too much. True Blue Points haven’t been readily available for about 80 years. However today, you can yet again enjoy a real Blue Point oyster. Just this year (2015) a small sustainable oyster farm on the Great South Bay in Long Island, has begun harvesting to order, a limited stock of the old world Blue Points. At least they are what you could say is the best example of the real deal. This shows us that responsible, regulated seafood works… gluttony and ignorance does not.
Today’s seafood professionals have a bigger responsibility than ever before. We have a lot of work to do in order to restore our oceans. There is a tremendous amount of pressure in the industry to stay “even keeled” and to not “make waves”. At Hudson Valley Seafood, we know that if we want to have an abundance of seafood for our grandchildren to enjoy, waves need to be made. Our company exists not only to provide delicious and healthy seafood to the people of The Hudson Valley but also to educate the masses on how to consume seafood responsibly and confidently. Our friendly staff takes a lot of pride in being available and approachable for questions and general seafood conversation. Contact us or stop in during business hours to talk fish.