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BC fishermen reel in lingcod to feed Vancouver's hungry

Fishing for less fortunate

A fishboat packed with fresh lingcod is set to land this morning in Ucluelet, where the fish will be unloaded and taken to Vancouver to provide up to 10,000 meals for people in need.

The donation of about 3,000 pounds of the prized B.C. fish is a result of a collaboration involving a Nanoose fisherman and his teenage son, a Richmond-based seafood firm, a packing company, and a charity that will distribute the food.

The project is spearheaded by Organic Ocean Seafood, which normally sells to markets in Canada, the U.S. and Asia, where it can be found in Michelin-starred restaurants, said chief executive Dane Chauvel.

Since the pandemic hit, the company has set up its Neighbours Helping Neighbours venture to sell seafood through a contactless home-delivery service, and to support projects such as the lingcod catch.

Nanoose Bay fisherman Jeff Belveal offered his services and took his son, Isaac, 17, who volunteered as crew on the 37-foot fishing boat, Chauvel said.

The Belveals have spent the past few days catching the lingcod using a hook and line.

After the fish is unloaded at Ucluelet, it will be taken by truck to Coldfish Seafood Company in Vancouver, where the team is donating its time to cutting and processing the fish. The lingcod will then go to Goodly Foods Society, a Vancouver-based social enterprise, which will use it in soups for people in need. Goodly will distribute its fish soup to other charities in Greater Vancouver and share the fish with organizations providing meals to groups in the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver, said Aart Schuurman Hess, Goodly’s chief executive.

The donation will generate between 9,000 and 10,000 meals for vulnerable and marginalized people, Schuurman Hess said. “We are very excited about it and we are looking forward to sharing it.”

The value of the project is about $30,000.



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