Culinary Adventures, Green
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Community Supported Fishery

CSA stands for Community Supported Agriculture and is when people from the community provide financial support to their local growers in return for a weekly bounty of seasonal produce.

Maybe this has come out of the locavore movement: people preferring to eat locally grown and produced food.

Well, now there is the next step for seafood lovers out there. CSF stands for Community Supported Fishery and for a fee or a share a supporter receives a weekly portion of the catch during a season. It means that fishermen can have cash in advance of the season.

With CSF, fishermen are paid a flat rate per season instead of being paid for the fish they catch. The usual model means that fishermen are forced to chase whatever fish fetches the highest price. Instead, this model discourages fishermen from overfishing the most popular more lucrative fish as there is no bonus for doing so. It means the supporter can get to try all sorts of bounty from the sea rather than the limited range supermarkets sell these days.

I haven’t heard of it being available in New Zealand yet, but if you are interested, make some noise and maybe someone will start something.

With the huge mark up on fish by the major retailers, this could be a great way of selling and eating fish. Fishermen are paid 10% of the retail price of fish.

A quick look online found this model from Massachusetts.

12 week programme

$180US half share / $360US full share

Which works out to be $15US / $30US per week.

You get: a variety of haddock, cod, flounder, hake, dabs, grey sole, monkfish, Pollock, and redfish – and possibly other seafood such as clams, lobsters and scallops.  The fish will be dressed (cleaned and gutted, NOT filleted), and packed on ice.  The fish caught for the CSF will never be old or frozen, and it will always come from fishermen who believe in working with the ocean and the community.

“Community supported fishery programs include a triple bottom line.

  • Environmental stewardship: to encourage an ethic of ecological stewardship that results in creative, community-based approaches to marine conservation.
  • Local economies: to increase the viability of traditional coastal communities by fostering economic opportunities that support natural resource-based livelihoods.
  • Social improvements: to cultivate ties and establish bonds between shoreside communities and inshore urban, suburban and rural communities by providing fresh, local seafood.”

Images courtesy of

This entry was posted in: Culinary Adventures, Green


I am Genie, a graphic designer/photographer obsessed with food and bunnies. I live in Whanganui, New Zealand with my husband, The Koala and our two rabbits, Kobe and Bento. I write about my hedonistic ways and I love the mantra "Eat well, travel often". I prefer not to write about myself in third person.

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