Fishermen seem to prefer cold beer with their battered Lionfish. Diners are still experimenting with pairing wines to various Lionfish recipes. Lots of information about this fish has finally reached the global consciousness.
The Lionfish has even been on an episode of Shark Tank. A man presented an idea that needed funding to try to control the growth of the Lionfish and the danger it poses to Caribbean waters.
Fishermen and Chefs in the Caribbean are catching and cooking this invasive fish. This fish has been causing turmoil in Caribbean waters with the delicate underwater eco-system.
All inclusive resort Chefs are experimenting with new ways to prepare and serve Lionfish to increase its popularity as an entree.
What’s all the fuss about?
In a bid to protect the Negril Reefs from the invasive lionfish, Couples Resort Jamaica joined forces with the Green Island Fisher Folk Co-operative in staging a successful first staging of the Negril Lionfish tournament at Green Island Beach.
The three-day tournament, which ended on Sunday, was used to encourage fishermen who are a part of the co-operative to catch as many Lionfish as possible to earn a share of a $90,000 prize.
With over 25 fishermen taking part in the event, well over 30 lionfish were caught and prepared on spot by chefs from Couples Swept Away and Couples Negril.
Free diver Patrick Lawrence came out victorious with the most haul, including the biggest and smallest fish which saw him pocketing $40,000.
“I have been free diving for years so it was very easy for me, but I’m getting up in age now so I might give it a break soon. But it is always good to come out on top as we have been planning this event for a good while now and it is now a success and I am very happy,” Lawrence told the Jamaica Observer.
Balford Bowen, president of the Green Island Fisher Folk Co-operative, explained that another objective of the tournament was also to assist members of the community.
“The reason why we put on this event is because I went to other places and see how fisherfolk apply themselves and the success it brings being a member of a cooperation. So I came back and decided to form a group to make things better for the fisherfolk around here, while also helping the people of the community.
“So we started small, offering little assistance to the disabled and less fortunate so those people can repair their houses and we are also aiming to help a number of homeless people. So things are looking good so far and we appreciate the support of the sponsors,” Bowen noted.
Meanwhile, Gary Stephens, vice-president of operations at Couples Resort, expressed pleasure that the partnership to extract the lionfish from the sea was a success.
“We were asked by the Green Island fisherfolk to be a part of their funday and it tied in well with our chairman’s hope to improve our reef by ridding ourselves of lionfish which are obviously detrimental to the livestock of other fish. So we partnered with them to achieve that goal, and from where I am sitting, I think it was a huge success,” said Stephens.
“I am very happy with the staff and all the participants and sponsors, Rainforest, Hedonism, Italian CafÃ© Negril as well as the Rotary Club Negril chapter. So hopefully we can inspire the fishermen to come out to the next one in bigger numbers so more fish can be caught,” he added.
Continue Reading at: Jamaican Observer - "Lionfish on menu of sport fishers"