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Fish 2.0 Exclusive interview: Norah Eddy, Co-Founder Salty Girl Seafood

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Six seafood innovators capped the Fish 2.0 Competition Finals & Sustainable Seafood Innovation Forum in Palo Alto. We speak to one of the winners, Norah Eddy, Co-Founder Salty Girl Seafood.

In 140 characters or less – what is Salty Girl Seafood?

Salty Girl Seafood is a sustainable seafood company focused on connecting consumers more closely with the ocean and its resources.

What was the driver for creating Salty Girl Seafood – what gap did it fill?

My business partner, Laura Johnson and I, were working on our master’s degrees in natural marine resource management (fisheries in particular). We have worked in fisheries across the country and around the world, and we continually hear from fisheries managers that the missing link on the path towards sustainability is often a buyer who can provide the financial incentive to transition to more responsible fishing practices. This was really where we saw a huge opportunity to leverage our experience and understanding as scientists to positively impact fisheries from a market-based perspective.

Even as marine scientists, we found it frustrating and overwhelming to know if we were making responsible choices when it came to buying seafood—there was just so much conflicting information out there. We had consumers coming to us for guidance in purchasing fish. We found that they really trusted us, trusted the brand. Before creating our current line of easy-to-cook seafood, the question that followed, “what should I buy” was inevitably, “ok, so, how do I cook it?” So, it was a natural next step to provide consumers with products that made their lives easier and that they felt good about buying.

Who does it primarily serve?

Our line of Salty Girl seafood serves a wide range of consumers. While our brand has strong appeal with the millennial generation, we have found that other demographics enjoy the convenience of our products as well. We have moms telling us how they love to keep our seafood on hand for healthy, easy dinners; baby boomers using our fish when hosting dinner parties. Our products are designed to make purchasing sustainable seafood easy, and healthy!

What difference does Salty Girl Seafood want to make?

Salty Girl was started with the mission of having a positive impact by driving sustainability in the fisheries where we work. We work collaboratively with fishermen and their communities, non-governmental organizations, and local fisheries managers, to bring better value to fishermen harvesting sustainably, while incentivizing others to do so by paying a premium for sustainably harvested catch.

What are the barriers to making that difference?

Anytime you are working with a natural resource, there are inevitably many variables not only with the resource itself, but also a wide range of stakeholders and market conditions. Achieving access to a reliable supply of traceable, sustainable seafood and identifying fisheries where we can have a positive impact is a core component of our model. Due to the opaque nature of the seafood industry and traditionally long supply chains, we have to work hard to ensure traceability as we grow.

Who’s helping you overcome those barriers?

We are fortunate to have a great network of mentors, collaborator businesses, scientists, fishermen, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). Its this network that helps us overcome barriers associated with sourcing and traceability.

You recently won a Fish 2.0 award. Without being modest, why do you think you won?

Haha, I’ll try not to be modest! We worked really hard to build a great pitch. Competing with really great companies on an international stage, sharing our mission with the world, we knew we needed to nail it. I think really though, our passion—the why we do what we do—really came through. A lot of people will tell you, with startups, its more about the team than the idea. Our team is incredibly passionate and dedicated to our mission. That resonates with people.

Are the seafood industry’s actions today commensurate with the significant fish stock challenges we face?

There’s no question that we (globally) have a long history of irresponsible and destructive fishing practices that continue today. The status quo is damaging not only from an ecological standpoint, but we are also plagued with significant social justice issues like rampant slave labor.

That said, we have made strides in improving the health and vitality of many of our world’s fisheries, particularly in developed nations. There is a greater awareness from industry-both supply and demand sides-to change the way things are done. We are proud to be a company working to help create that change.

How can people – individuals and organisations – find out more about Salty Girl Seafood?

We love to hear from people! Visit us online at saltygirlseafood.com, drop us a line via our website, or find us on social media (facebook, twitter, instagram).

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Want to Connect With Nature? Start by Disconnecting From Busyness

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Connect With Nature

Have you ever found yourself staring at one of your (many) devices and feeling slightly disgusted with how much time you waste on technology? If so, you aren’t alone. We all have moments like these and it’s important that we use them as motivation to change – especially if we want to be more connected with nature.

How Busyness Impacts Your Connection With Nature

Whether you realize it or not, you live an ultra connected life. Between smart phones, tablets, computers, and wearable devices, you’re never very far from some sort of technology that can connect you to the internet or put you in touch with other people. That’s just the world we live in.

While it could be argued that this sort of omnipresent connectivity is a positive thing, it’s also pretty clear that being permanently tethered to technology impacts our ability to strip away distractions and connect with nature.

When you’re always within arm’s reach of a device, you feel a sense of busyness.  Whether it’s browsing your social media feed, uploading a picture, reading the news, or responding to an email, there’s always something to do. As someone who wants to spend more time in nature, this is problematic.

4 Practical Ways to Disconnect

If you want to truly connect with nature and live a greener lifestyle, you have to be proactive about finding ways to disconnect. Here are a few practical suggestions:

1. Switch to a New Phone Plan

It’s not always practical to totally unplug from the world. Family and work responsibilities mean you can’t go off the grid and continue to fulfill your responsibilities. Having said that, there are some ways to scale back.

One suggestion is to switch to a prepaid phone plan. When you have a prepaid phone plan, you’re far less likely to spend hours and hours of your time making phone calls, sending texts, and surfing the web. It forces you to be more conscious of what you’re doing.

2. Get Rid of Social Media

Social media is one of the biggest time wasters for most people. Whether you realize it or not, it’s also a huge stressor. You’re constantly being exposed to the best snapshots of everyone else’s lives, which makes you feel like you’re missing out on something (even when you aren’t).

If you want to feel a sense of relief and free yourself up to spend more time in nature, get rid of social media. Don’t just delete the apps off your phone – actually disable your accounts. It’s a bold, yet necessary step.

3. Create Quiet Hours

If you aren’t able to get rid of social media and disable various online accounts, the next best thing you can do is establish quiet hours each day where you totally detach from technology. You should do this for a minimum of three hours per day for best results.

4. Build Community

Do you know why we’re drawn to social media and our devices? Whether consciously or subconsciously, it’s because we all want to be connected to other people. But do you know what’s better than connecting with people online? Connecting with them in person.

As you build real life, person-to-person relationships, you’ll feel less of a need to constantly have your eyes glued to a screen. Connect with other people who have an appreciation for nature and bond over your mutual interests.

Untether Your Life

If you find yourself constantly connected to a device, then this is probably a clear indicator that you aren’t living your best life. You certainly aren’t enjoying any sort of meaningful connection with nature. Now’s as good a time as any to untether your life and explore what a world free from cords, screens, and batteries is really like.

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6 Tips for an Eco-Friendly Move

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Moving can be a stressful and challenging time. No matter how many times you’ve done it in the past, the process of packing up, transporting, and unpacking isn’t very fun. It’s also not very eco-friendly. As you prepare for your next move, there are things you can do to ensure you leave less of a footprint behind.

6 Tips for a Greener Move

Because of the stress and pressure felt when moving, it’s pretty common for people to rush through the process and focus on getting it done. In fact, a lot of people take an “at all costs” approach; they’ll do whatever it takes to make the process as cheap and fast as possible. Don’t be one of those people. It doesn’t take much effort to turn a standard move into an eco-friendly move.

1. Maximize Each Trip

When moving across town, it’s imperative that you make as few trips as possible. Each trip requires more gas, more emissions, and more waste, and more time.

If you’re taking your personal vehicle, consider pulling a trailer behind it. You’d be surprised how much stuff you can fit into a small trailer. Not only will it make your move greener, but it’ll also save you a lot of time.

2. Donate Things You Don’t Want to Keep

The longer you live somewhere, the more junk you accumulate. This isn’t always obvious until you start packing for a big move. Instead of bringing all of these things with you to your next home, get rid of the stuff you don’t need! If the items are useful, donate them. If the items don’t have much value, toss them.

3. Reuse Moving Boxes

Not only are moving boxes expensive, but they’re also wasteful. If you need a bunch of cardboard boxes, consider looking around on Craigslist, asking friends, or checking the dumpsters behind stores. You can usually find a bunch of recycled boxes of all different shapes and sizes. Here are 12 places you can get them for free.

4. Get Creative With Packing

Who says you need moving boxes? You may find that it’s possible to do most of your move without all that cardboard. Things like storage containers, trashcans, filing cabinets, buckets, and dressers can all store items. Blankets and sheets can be used in lieu of bubble wrap to prevent your items from getting damaged.

5. Use Green Cleaning Supplies

Once you arrive at your new place, resist the urge to pull out a bunch of harsh chemicals to clean the place. You can do yourself (and the planet) a favor by using green cleaning supplies instead. Ingredients like vinegar, baking soda, and ammonia are great to start with.

6. Forward Your Mail ASAP

Don’t delay in forwarding your mail from your previous address to your new one. Not only is it wasteful for the Postal Service to route your mail to a place where you don’t live, but the next owner is probably just going to toss your letters in the trash.

Moving Doesn’t Have to be Wasteful

Most people only move once every few years. Some people will go a decade or more without a move. As a result, the process of moving often feels strange and new. The less experience you have with it, the less likely it is that you’ll be as efficient as you should. But instead of just diving into the process blind, take some time to learn about what an eco-friendly move looks like. That way, you can leave behind the smallest footprint possible.

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