Know where your food is coming from

Tuesday, May 31st, 2016 12:27pm


Image Caption

The ThisFish tag will trace the journey of Ha'oom halibut from ocean to plate.

A First Nations seafood company is using technology to keep its customers informed about where their product is coming from.

Ha’oom Wild Seafood is using tracking tags on all halibut caught for the commercial market.

The ThisFish program at allows customers to learn who caught their seafood, (as well as when, where and how) using smartphones, tablets and computers. It will even send a message to the harvester.

This is the first year Ha’oom Wild Seafood is offering Puu?i (halibut) since the inception of the company in 2012. The company has become well-known for its gooseneck barnacles, a tender, flavourful pale pink meat that is served in fine restaurants around the world, but they also offer Sablefish, Chinook Salmon and Lingcod. Halibut, however, will be the only product, so far, to have the THISFISH tag attached.

Ha’oom, which simply means food, or something good to eat, was developed by the T’aaq-wiihak Nations, a group of five Nuu-chah-nulth Nations (Ahousaht, Ehattesaht, Hesquiaht, Mowachaht/Muchalaht, and Tla-o-qui-aht) which have proved up to the Supreme Court of Canada their Aboriginal right to fish and sell fish into the commercial marketplace.

The company is recommended by the Vancouver Aquarium as ocean-friendly. The name T’aaq-wiihak refers to the permission granted by the hereditary chiefs to carefully harvest seafood products from their territories.

“Our fishers meet Canada’s overall objectives for fisheries management, sustainably harvesting all Ha’oom Wild Seafood,” reads the website at .

“Having consumers be able to trace their halibut back to the T’aaq-wiihak fishery not only distinguishes Ha’oom seafood products as unique in the marketplace, but raises awareness of T’aaq-wiihak and the Nuu-chah-nulth fisheries rights case as a whole,” commented Alex Gagne, T’aaq-wiihak Fisheries Coordinator.

ThisFish, a seafood traceability system which follows the journey of the product from ocean to plate, was launched by Ecotrust Canada in 2010. Seafood is identified with uniquely coded tags and labels.