The first movers.

Chile

San Pedro, The ¨Macheros¨

Four families - The Velázquez, The Munizaga, The Contreras, and The Godoy - who settled near La Serena coast in 1854 were looking for a way to survive picking clams and oysters; they didn’t know that they have funded a fishing village. In 1930, a priest named Father Donosio, built a chapel with the image of Saint Peter donated by the archbishop of La Serena. That is why the fishing village was named after the fishermen’s patron saint.


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Tongoy, Leading Scollop Aquiculture

Tongoy is located in the region of Coquimbo, 27 miles south of La Serena. The peninsula of Tongoy is famous for its beautiful beaches, its peaceful environment, and has the best food in the region. Its population is about 4,000 people, and most of them work in fishing and tourism. Tongoy started out as a mineral port, but over time it turned into a fishing village due to its natural conditions and the decline of mineral activities. The government supported  and helped Tongoy’s artisanal fishermen to develop the activity by building a major dock. Also, in 1982 a marine biology lab was created; the lab’s main goal was to market local seafood and restructure local economy.


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Caleta El Manzano, The Heart of Patagonia

The activity at Caleta El Manzano started a century ago when people arrived from Chiloe Island to log larch trees to build one of the first Puerto Montt railroads.  Some of these people stayed and started to fish. One of the main seafood product is the Tollo (a species of velvet catfish) because its liver properties, another product is the Merluza (hake) which they fish during the night using a bait and a flashlight to attract the shoal to the boat.

A few years ago, Spanish companies arrived and the fishing quotes rose significantly; this decreased fishing quantities for the locals and affected families that depended on that product directly. After that experience, fishermen created a union that today has 44 members and 30 boats that go out fishing hake in a sustainable way, so both the fish and the community survive.


Calbuco, Seafood Powerhouse 

Calbuco is a commune of a little bit over 30,000 people and it is located 35 miles south of Puerto Montt, Llanquihue, Region de Los Lagos, Chile. Its economy is based mainly on seafood products. The artisanal fishing is a very important activity among Calbuco families.The Caleta Calbuco has a really strong union that can be distinguish since 2002 due to its organized, efficient, and selective work. The comparison with the salmon market, the contamination, and the lack of support from public organizations made them change their attitude towards an integral administration of the business focusing on sustainability and respect of protected areas.


Chaihuin, Valdivian Role Models

Chaihuin is a commune located 18 miles south of Corral and is close to Huiro, Huape and Cadillal.  The main catch of Caihuin are choritos (Chilean mussel) and locos (Chilean abalone) and because it is located on the Chaihuin river, they can work all year long instead of seasonally. That is why their residents created a union to take over the administration of the activity in order to control the land and the river. Today, the union has 35 members, with a strong presence of women.


 
 

Caleta Quintay, The Pioneer

The residents of Quintay have developed a very diversified fishing activity, including the use of harpoons, fishing lines,  trolling, longline, fishing nets, and traps. Moreover, its coast is naturally perfect for diving.  In 1980, el loco - main local seafood product - almost disappeared; so fishermen were obligated to leave Quintay for 4-months periods until 1988. Due to this experience, in 1989 they created the first marine protected area in Chile and Latin America. It started with 130 acres and now it has 375 acres; the area is protected exclusively for reproductive stock, and after a payment of a patent, the community make an inventory to determine an annual fishing quota.  Quintay’s rich coast, full of fishes and shellfishes, guarantee a positive future since they have learned from the past: respect of fishing quotas, species protection, and black market control. Today its main product is “el loco” - Chilean abalone - which mostly eat crustaceans from non-contaminated waters, and these offer a special flavor, firm meat, and regular size.


 
 

Chepu, At the heart of Eco Tourism

Chepu’s main appeal is its geography: extensive meadows that fall into a river basin, a rich biodiversity of birds and native species are characteristic of the Chiloe National Park, which starts in Chepu and ends in a large beach with white sand in the Pacific ocean. Moreover, Chepu has been distinguished by the Lonely Planet as one of the 10 best destinations for sustainable tourism in the world.

 

Compared to other zones of the island, Chepu has a low population density, only a few families live in this area and they work mainly in agriculture, ranching, and seafood extraction. The star of the area is “el loco” (Chilean abalone). Thanks to the rainy weather, great extension of beaches and the high presence of minerals, there is an excellent condition to cultivate bivalves like “el loco”. Its high market price and ideal environment help fishermen to harvest a product that is 100% free of artificial substances, where the generosity of the Chiloe forest  delivers Locos that are big, smooth, and with intense flavor.

 

Huiro, Home of the "Minga"

Huiro is an important settlement of lafquenche (Mapuches) who keep traditions alive through handicraft products and local seafood cuisine. The fishing village of Huiro is located 18 miles from Corral and 5 miles from Chaihuin. It is an area inhabited by Mapuche families who arrived at the end of the XIX century looking to survive thanks to the natural resources that exist in the area.

Huiro is a place where life goes around the forest and the sea because its traditional economy is based on ranching and fishing. There are also some interesting natural and cultural places like the colony of sea lions, Pelche beach and its dunes that move according to the season of the year, and the fishing village of Huiro where the fishermen union developed an initiative of marine tourism, among other local experiences.

 


The seafood powerhouse.

Mexico

Courtesy of Smartfish

Courtesy of Smartfish

SCPP Punta Abre Ojos

This fishing village has an almost prehistoric wildlife of fish species. From the Giant Black sea bass ranging from 50 to 450 pounds. To Abalone, and lobster.  Together with Smartfish, Shellcatch will work with the Punta Abreojos fishing community.  They are also a diving, and surfing hot spot located in the Middle of the Baja California Peninsula


courtesy of smartfish

courtesy of smartfish

SCPP Buzos y Pescadores (Isla Natividad)

Natividad Island, inhabited by a community that has a concession for benthic fishing resources, operates through the “Buzos y Pescadores” cooperative, which was established more than 50 years ago and currently has 80 members. Thanks to SmartFish, Shellcatch will use its verification technology to ensure sustainable fishing practices and encourage best practices to perform responsible fishing.


Coming soon...

Peru!