Whitefish N’ Worms: Appetite for Utilization

For Friday, Nov. 1, 2022


1 – A new campaign aims to show how commercially caught whitefish from the Great Lakes can be more fully used. Advocates say that could raise the per-fish value to as much as $3,500. 

Three thousand, five hundred dollars. 

Credit: Biodiversity Heritage Library

The Chicago-based Conference of Great Lakes St. Lawrence Governors & Premiers launched the “100% Whitefish” initiative recently in Detroit. 

The goal is to demonstrate how 100% of a whitefish can be used for food and other purposes. 

The effort builds on successes with cod in Iceland and other species around the world. 

Initial testing on lake whitefish has reportedly shown that many high-value products could be made from materials that are wasted today.

A “100% fish” strategy in Iceland increased the use rate of cod from 40% for human consumption to more than 90%, including byproducts such as skin and collagen processed into food and non-food products. That has raised the value of each fish from about $12 to $3,500

Proponents say similar benefits could flow from greater use and reduced waste of the whitefish catch in the Great Lakes. 

More info on the campaign is online at gsgp.org

2 – If you missed the Earthworm Festival in Birch Run, here’s a recap:

The event was held at 5Heart Earthworm Farm, where Iris Waste Diversion Specialists showed off its expanded operations. 

The expansion at 5Heart was largely due to a $214,000 state grant.

An electric tractor and electric van there have helped move the organization toward eliminating the use of gasoline in its operations, state officials say

The tractor is used in a small-scale composting operation at 5Heart. 

The van is used to collect food scraps from Bay City and Saginaw area residents and businesses as part of a subscription-based program.

The program diverts scraps from being landfilled. Officials say the effort has averted the equivalent of more than 17,000 pounds of carbon dioxide since collections began in June.

– Mr. Great Lakes is heard Friday mornings in Bay City, Michigan, on Delta College Public Radio 90.1 FM (listen live). Follow @jeffkart on Twitter #MrGreatLakes


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