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gennaio 4th, 2014 Posted 11:46 AM

Startup Company Forks Over Asian Carp

This week an Illinois fish processor is sending 44,000 pounds of Asian carp back to Asia as food. A small startup in Pearl, Ill., the Big River Fish Company is just one group that buy canada goose jacket cheap sees Asian carp not as a voracious, invasive species, but as canadian goose jacket a business opportunity.

Asian carp can be canada goose uk outlet huge up to 100 pounds and they have been feasting on native fish in the Mississippi and Illinois rivers for years. Originally introduced to the United States in the 1970s Canada Goose Coats On Sale to eat algae, the carp now threaten the Great Lakes. Some may even call the fish ugly, but University of Illinois biologist Michael Lemke puts it more delicately.

“It’s an unusual looking fish,” Lemke says. “With the eye lower than we are used to seeing them on the head, that’s unusual. The carp in general might not be thought of as the prettiest fish.”

For Ross Harano, though, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. As the international marketing director for Big River Fish Co., he had the idea to try to sell the fish cheap Canada Goose back to Asia. But first a makeover was called for.

“We want to make this a marketing product in terms canada goose uk shop of it being wild Canada Goose online [and nonpolluted],” Harano says. “It has so much energy it ‘dances’ on the water. And as a result of that we are able to market the fish to high end restaurants.”

Fishing The Chinese Market

“Nonpolluted” is a relative term used when compared with Canada Goose Jackets Chinese waters. To seal the deal with an interested company in China, the fish had to get past a taste test by the owner.

“We cooked all this canada goose black friday sale Asian carp according to [the Chinese owner's] recipes, and I ate a lot of it, too,” Harano says. “And what came out it was that he said, ‘You know, this is the best carp [I've had] since [I] was a kid.’ ”

Harano says Asian carp has “very solid meat” canada goose uk black friday that takes on the taste of sauces easily canada goose clearance sale when cooked, just like white fish meat.

Big River Fish Co. freezes the canada goose coats on sale fish whole to canada goose store ship to China. The company operates out of a meager 12,000 square foot plant. With no time to waste, the orders have started going out, and Big River is shipping what it can, when it can. The company received $2 million in federal funding to expand its processing plant after securing a contract with the company in China for 30 million pounds of carp meat. That expansion is expected be completed in the spring of 2011.

Rebranding By Fishermen

Big River Fish Co. works with about 100 independent fishermen to help fill its orders. An average uk canada goose outlet fish weighs 30 pounds Canada Goose Parka at current prices about $8 each to Canada Goose sale wholesalers. Abundance is not an issue, but not everyone wants China to reclaim all of this potential canada goose coats cash crop.

More From NPR On The Asian CarpChange To Canada Goose Outlet River’s Flow Considered To Stop Carp

In Grafton, Ill., where the Mississippi canada goose outlet sale River meets the Illinois River, fishermen can just rev the motor a bit, and hundreds of the carp fling themselves into the air.

Resident Gray Magee has tasted the carp cheap canada goose uk and sees a bright future here for the fish domestically. This was once a big fishing area, known for catfish and bass. buy canada goose jacket But fishermen have been leaving town since the majority of their catch now is Asian canada goose clearance carp.

Magee insists canada goose more would stick around if they had a place to canada goose factory sale process the fish. He wants to rebrand the fish and sell it as “silverfin” carp.

“Money’s part of it obviously or we couldn’t do it,” Magee says. “But the big part that excites us is that we can leave something here that’s going to be good for not only the state of Illinois but [also] other states all the way on the uk canada goose inland rivers.”

The Threat Remains

These new marketing strategies for the Asian carp are a way to address what environmentalists Canada Goose Online call a serious threat.

Federal and state officials are studying plans to prevent the invasive species from making it to the Great Lakes, where they could threaten a sport fishing industry that brings in $7 billion annually.