“I feel blessed to be part of the Fish 2.0 2017 competition, it’s been amazing an opportunity, through the competition I’ve become clearer of my vision for Shepherd Islands Organic Seafood and championing sustainable fishing practices.
“It’s really important for the next generation, to look after our precious oceans. Employment opportunities in Vanuatu are limited and the work we do helps to provide a sustainable income to families.”
Owner of Vanuatu’s Shepherd Islands Organic Seafood, Obed Matariki, made the statement during the competition as was one of of three Pacific Island sustainable seafood businesses among 40 finalist from across the globe that pitched to investors at the Fish 2.0 Innovation Forum at Stanford University, in Palo Alto, CA, USA.
Representing the Pacific Islands were Matariki’s Shepherd Islands Organic Seafood, Solomon Islands’ Didds Fishing Company and Indigo Seafood Palau.
Matariki said the sea cucumber and sea urchin farm has developed a customer base of Chinese seafood distributors and pharmaceutical companies for the estimated 500,000 juvenile sea cucumbers to be seeded on a 50-hectare plot in Vanuatu waters.
Timakata said the operation diverts artisanal fishermen and turtle hunters into more sustainable activities and it has a direct flow on effect to the community creating employment opportunities.