The Catch: How fishing companies reinvented slavery and plunder the oceans
by Michael Field (Awa Press, $40)
Reviewed by Alison McCulloch
You know those lists! The ubiquitous click-bait “listicles” like “5 Foods To Help You Live Longer”, or “10 Things You Should Eat Every Week”. Well, here’s another one: “2 Items All Food Listicles Must Have”:
1. How many slaves were involved in producing that food? (If the answer is anything above “0″, don’t eat it.)
2. How many threatened species were driven that much closer to extinction in the harvesting or production of that food? (If the answer is anything above “0″, don’t eat it.) I could go on: 3. How much did the getting that food to your mouth contribute to climate change? 4. How much pollution did it cause?
True, there won’t be all that much left to eat using this kind of decision tree, but as Michael Field makes clear in his disturbing new book, The Catch: How Fishing Companies Reinvented Slavery and Plunder the Oceans, we the great mass of consumers very much need to be asking these questions. We need to ask them privately, of ourselves, and publicly of policy makers and legislators and food companies and stores and our fellow humans. Then, we need to act on them.