The Gulf Gives Back! Commercial Fishermen Partner with Local Communities to Feed Families in Need

The Gulf Gives Back! Commercial Fishermen Partner with Local Communities to Feed Families in Need

The Gulf of Mexico Reef Fish Shareholders’ Alliance has partnered with three local food banks, four fish houses and seafood processors, a charitable impact investor, and more than 100 commercial fishermen and seafood suppliers throughout the Gulf of Mexico to deliver 28,000 meals of sustainably-harvested Gulf snapper and grouper to families and communities in need.

The purpose of this initiative is twofold: to support a vital domestic seafood industry still recovering from plummeting seafood demand due to COVID-19 global health pandemic; and to bring healthy, sustainably-sourced protein to charitable organizations to make positive impacts during a difficult year for everyone.

Areas served in the Gulf of Mexico region

Steinhatchee, Florida

Steinhatchee – Tides Up Fisheries and Fish For America USA, working with Captain Danny Lanier, Captain Paul Reeves, Captain Shan Roper and Captain Jim Zurbrick, and seafood processor Lombardi’s Seafood has thus far donated 1,400 pounds of individual 1-pound packaged filets of red snapper and red grouper to the Second Harvest Food Bank of Orlando, with another 10,000 pounds to go.

Larry Jones of Lombardi's Seafood offloads red snapper as Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) Marine Biologist  Matt Doster prepares to take scientific samples.

Larry Jones of Lombardi’s Seafood offloads red snapper as Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) Marine Biologist
Matt Doster prepares to take scientific samples.

Red snapper and red grouper are offloaded with Tide's Up Fisheries.  Pictured are Captain Paul Reeves (left), FWC Marine Biologist Matt Doster (middle), and Lombardi's Seafood processor, Larry Jones (right).

Red snapper and red grouper are offloaded with Tide’s Up Fisheries. Pictured are Captain Paul Reeves (left), FWC Marine Biologist Matt Doster (middle), and Lombardi’s Seafood processor, Larry Jones (right).

Pictured left to right - Captain Danny Lanier, Captain Paul Reeves, Jaime Chesser (mate for Captain Paul Reeves), Captain Shan Roper and Captain Jim Zurbrick alongside of the commercial fishing vessel Renegade out of Steinhatchee, Florida.

Pictured left to right – Captain Danny Lanier, Captain Paul Reeves, Jaime Chesser (mate for Captain Paul Reeves), Captain Shan Roper and Captain Jim Zurbrick alongside of the commercial fishing vessel Renegade out of Steinhatchee, Florida.

Whole grouper and snapper are brought to Lombardi's Seafood for processing, where they are filleted, packaged, and boxed up ready for donation.

Whole grouper and snapper are brought to Lombardi’s Seafood for processing, where they are filleted, packaged, and boxed up ready for donation.

Fish for America USA President, Captain Jim Zubrick (right), and Lombardi's Seafood employee stand with packaged fillets before loading them up to be delivered to the Second Harvest Food Bank.

Fish for America USA President, Captain Jim Zubrick (right), and Lombardi’s Seafood employee stand with packaged fillets before loading them up to be delivered to the Second Harvest Food Bank.

Madeira Beach, Florida

This program has brought together 36 commercial fishermen and ten dock crew at Wild Seafood Co. in Madeira Beach to harvest 20,000 pounds of red grouper and red snapper, and donate them to the St. Petersburg Free Clinic. The fish is landed whole at the dock, processed by Evans Meats and Seafood, and then the portioned pieces are distributed through to the local community. Each portion of fish is tagged with a unique Gulf WildTM QR code that shows where the fish was caught, the name and picture of the captain and vessel, and the path the fish took to the Clinic. So far 16,000 pounds of red grouper and red snapper have been processed and donated, with another 4,000 pounds to go.

Dock crew Chris Zook (left) and John Lucas (right) tag and grade red grouper and red snapper as they are offloaded from the commercial fishing vessel Miss Ruby at the Wild Seafood Co. dock in Madeira Beach, Florida.

Dock crew Chris Zook (left) and John Lucas (right) tag and grade red grouper and red snapper as they are offloaded from the commercial fishing vessel Miss Ruby at the Wild Seafood Co. dock in Madeira Beach, Florida.

Red grouper with Gulf WildTM tag offloaded at Wild Seafood Co. in Madeira Beach, Florida, ready to be processed by Evans Meats and Seafood.

Red grouper with Gulf Wild [TM] tag offloaded at Wild Seafood Co. in Madeira Beach, Florida, ready to be processed by Evans Meats and Seafood.

Father and son commercial fishermen Nick Carter and Bobby Carter stand in front of Bobby's boat, the fishing vessel Black Jack I, where Nick started as a deckhand and worked his way up to captaining a sister vessel - the fishing vessel Jules.

Father and son commercial fishermen Nick Carter and Bobby Carter stand in front of Bobby’s boat, the fishing vessel Black Jack I, where Nick started as a deckhand and worked his way up to captaining a sister vessel – the fishing vessel Jules.

Evans' Meats and Seafood employee, New York, processing a red grouper from  Wild Seafood Co.

Evans’ Meats and Seafood employee, New York, processing a red grouper from Wild Seafood Co.

Wild Seafood Co. employee Chris Zook delivers packaged red grouper and  red snapper fillets to the St. Petersburg Free Clinic.

Wild Seafood Co. employee Chris Zook delivers packaged red grouper and red snapper fillets to the St. Petersburg Free Clinic.

Galveston, Texas

Fishermen at Katie’s Seafood Market in Galveston, Texas caught 2,000 pounds of red snapper, processed it on-site, and donated it to the Lighthouse Charity Team, which provided more than 800 hot meals to people in need in Louisiana who are still facing the devastating impacts of multiple hurricanes this past season.

Katie's Seafood Market employee Jacob Tinoco offloads red snapper.

Katie’s Seafood Market employee Jacob Tinoco offloads red snapper.

Red snapper, complete with Gulf Wild[TM] tag, ready to be filleted.

Red snapper, complete with Gulf Wild [TM] tag, ready to be filleted.

Katie's Seafood Market employees Travis Rust and Salome Huinac fillet red snapper to be donated to the Lighthouse Charity Team

Katie’s Seafood Market employees Travis Rust and Salome Huinac fillet red snapper to be donated to the Lighthouse Charity Team.

Scott Gordon, Operations Coordinator of the Lighthouse Charity Team, holding up  some fresh red snapper.

Scott Gordon, Operations Coordinator of the Lighthouse Charity Team, holding up
some fresh red snapper.


Gulf of Mexico Reef Fish Shareholders' Alliance

The Shareholders’ Alliance is the largest organization of commercial grouper and snapper fishermen in the Gulf of Mexico. We work hard to ensure that our fisheries are sustainably managed so our fishing businesses can thrive, and our fishing communities can exist for future generations. We are the harvesters that provide much of the American public with a reliable source of domestically caught wild Gulf seafood, and we do this through a philosophy that sustainable seafood and profitable fishing businesses depend on healthy fish populations. If you want to help support this great program and be part of the “Gulf Gives Back” team, please donate here.

About The Gulf of Mexico Reef Fish Shareholders' Alliance

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.