Ideal Fish was formed in 2013 with the sole purpose of providing American consumers with a locally produced, fully sustainable, transparent, high quality fish that is free from any hormones, antibiotics or chemicals. All produced in a facility and environment that adheres to the most sustainable aquaculture methods available on our planet today. These are the core ideals upon which this company was founded. Our long-term goal is to produce several different species of fish that achieve the highest possible standards of quality.
We began our research by looking for a fish that was rapidly increasing in popularity here, but not currently being raised in this country nor caught in the wild in US waters. It had to be a fish that is high in nutritional content and is very desirable to the culinary world. We decided on the Mediterranean Sea Bass, also known as Branzino.
Raising this fish in a Recirculating Aquaculture System (“RAS”), a land based system that cleans and recirculates water in which the fish grow, provides the most environmentally sustainable method of raising fish available today. The location of our 63,000 sq. ft. facility at repurposed manufacturing site in Waterbury, CT allows us to sell our fish as a local product right in the middle of the largest seafood market in the United States. Additionally, our system recovers virtually all waste by-products of fish cultivation which we provide to local farmers to use as fertilizer for their vegetable and other fresh produce operations.
Our facility is a sparkling example of a state-of-the-art aquaculture center – the only commercial scale facility in the United States growing Branzino and one of only a few RAS facilities in the world that raises ocean-going fish in saltwater. We invite you to come by and see all the innovative things we are doing to bring fresh seafood production back to the United States.
We believe that quality and security of seafood available in the US today leave much to be improved. American’s should be able to enjoy higher quality fish that comes from a safer, traceable and sustainable seafood production system in this country. This includes responsible wild-catch fisheries as well as many forms of well-managed pond and lagoon, ocean cage and RAS aquaculture. Through future expansion into new markets and the addition of numerous seafood species to our product line, Ideal Fish plans to play a significant role in the development of a robust, sustainable aquaculture industry in the United States.
Farmed fish production will need to increase 130% by 2050 in order to meet projected worldwide demand. Aquaculture is no longer just an option but is now a necessity. We need to find ways to grow fish that is sustainable, long term, both to our environment and to our health. In addition, todays’ consumer is becoming more concerned about the provenance, sustainability, freshness and quality of the seafood they buy. At last there is a company that delivers on both of these requirements. That company is Ideal Fish.
- Imports Can Be Toxic
The US imports nearly 90% of the seafood consumed in this country. Less than 2% of these imports is inspected by the FDA and a significant amount of what is tested at the border is returned due to the detection of antibiotics and other chemical additives that are illegal for food use in the US.
- A Lack of Freshness
Fish that have been farmed or caught abroad travel thousands of miles before entering the United States and then travel thousands more food miles before reaching the retailer or restaurant/food service provider. Even wild fish caught in US territorial waters are often one to two weeks old by the time they are landed at the dock. In each case the fish enter a convoluted and inefficient seafood distribution system in this country, adding more miles and significant cost while substantially diminishing the quality and shelf life.
- Impacts On The Environment
Commercial fishing and poorly managed fish farming operations can be seriously injurious to the environment, depleting wild fish stocks, ocean resources and causing pollution and pathogen contamination to aquatic habitats.
- Counterfeit Food
Worldwide, the estimated value of counterfeit food on the market exceeds $49 billion. The top three offenders are: Seafood, Olive Oil and Honey. As a result of poor transparency and traceability customers are frequently served mislabeled fish or shellfish – in some cases, as often as 33% of the time (Oceana Study, February 2013).