In the three months since Hugh's Fish Fight screened on Channel 4 there's been a frenzy of activity in the fish trade, thanks to Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's investigation into the way our fish is caught and sold. If you missed the series the first time round and are wondering what all the fuss was about, the series is being repeated starting tonight at 10pm on More 4.
Hugh’s journey takes him all the way from the sea to the supermarkets (taking in fish farms and fish markets en route). He highlights the horrific problem of discards, the wasteful bycatch of perfectly edible and marketable fish, happening in UK waters. He delves into the shocking reality of farmed salmon production, and he confronts the big brands who kill a lot more than just tuna to fill the tins they stack on their shelves
Along the way he manages to speak to ministers, EU politicians, fishermen, scientists and supermarkets.
But most importantly, Hugh’s Fish Fight has made a real difference. Greenpeace has been supporting Hugh’s team since the programmes were being developed, but the real impact has only happened since they hit the airwaves. By shining a huge spotlight on the big brands using indefensible environmental claims, whilst trashing marine life, these programmes helped force internationally-significant retail giants Tesco, Asda and Princes to change their tune on tinned tuna.
His focus on discards has also forced UK and EU politicians to take up the fight on this issue – leading to an extraordinary meeting by the EU commissioner and serious consideration of a changing in policies to outlaw this practice. In a period when the EU is reviewing its fishing policies, this political pressure couldn’t have happened at a better time.
And to date his Fish Fight petition has gathered an amazing 664,000 sign-ups.
If you haven’t already seen it, try and catch Hugh’s Fish Fight tonight on More 4 at 10pm. If you're not around, the whole series is still available online.
If you have already seen it – why not check it out again, to remind yourself of what got you riled up the first time, and how much impact these programmes have already had? And make sure you tell all your friends to watch too.