The catch of the day on your holiday menu? 11 Black fisherfolk to buy your fish

In the words of Golden Era hip hop emcee Rakim, “Fish which is my favorite dish,” has become a thing for this holiday season. Meat and potatoes move over, we have salmon and lobster options.

Turkey is the signature meat for Thanksgiving and even Christmas. So much so, it is the iconic poultry resting on photos and postcards. But, as the years pass by, many people prefer other options, while others have other dietary options. 

Although many have shifted the meaning of the holiday seasons due to religious and cultural differences, it is one of the few times in the year many can take off from work to enjoy their family and friends. When it comes to the decadent meals for the various gatherings, there are many choices now for vegans, vegetarians and pescatarians. 

Fish and crustaceans are starting to take center dish in some households. Now let me emphasize, some fried fish has been a popular added item in many of Black households. So fish is not new, it just has started entering into the mainstream culinary conversation. Black folk been, been in the know.

From red snapper to shrimp, there is an ocean and riverful of varieties to serve for the holiday meals. But what if you could select your catch from Black fisherfolk or suppliers? Though there are few in the fishing industry, much of aquaculture depended on Black skill and labor. For generations, many African Americans lived on coastal lands and around water before they were pushed out for redevelopment. In places like Mississippi, known for its catfish farming, Black fisheries were targeted and shuttered.

| Check out: The Ultimate lists of Black farmers selling locally-raised beef, poultry, pork and lamb.

Now that Black aquaculture is slowly making its way into fisheries, you can order from one of these fisherfolk. Even if you live in areas where they are not located, some ship your orders right to your door, like Apex Seafood in North Carolina. Owned by Tyrone Hightower, he works with a collective of fisherfolk from all ethnicities and races to supply his growing customer base.

Last year, I ordered about 15 pounds of fish, which he packed in ice then shipped via UPS. The fish came still frozen and absolutely delicious. He also broke down each fish and provided suggested cooking recipes. Most importantly, the fish did not have that aggressive fish smell that can make you rethink consumption.

Apex Seafood | Apex, NC | Catches and sells fish and crustacean off the coast of North Carolina | Website + Facebook + Instagram | Email: apexseafoodandmarket@gmail.com | Tel. 919-701-8657

Bradley Seafood Market | St. Helena, SC | Catches and sells fresh shrimp | Tel. 843-838-2924

Brown’s Oyster Supply | Charleston, SC | Catches and sells oysters | Facebook + Instagram | Email: 843-513-2499

Capt. Sin’s Wholesale Seafood | Houston, TX |  Provides and delivers freshest quality, locally sourced seafood to include live Louisiana crawfish, fresh Gulf shrimp and crab; Provides boating services for freshwater fishing | Website + Website 2 + Facebook + Instagram | Tel. 281-725-8399

Lee Jackson Farms  | Hayneville, AL | Raises and sells shrimp | Website + Facebook | Email: leejacksonfarms@hotmail.com | Tel.  334-209-5909

Nile Valley Aquaponics | Kansas City, MO | Offers locally grown fish, vegetables, microgreens, herbs along with recipes to cook with and nutrition and healing properties through a network of income producing microfarms (coming soon). |  Website | Email: info@nilevalleyaquaponics.com | Tel. 816-382-2489

Scott Fish Farm | Itta Bena, MS | Raises and sells catfish and shellfish | 662-299-0508 or 662-254-7849

Southern Breeze Seafood | Jacksonville, NC | Fishes and sells fish and shrimp, as well as sells the catch of other fisherfolk | Instagram | Email: captjohn86@yahoo.com | Phone: 910-430-4289

Taylor Fish Farm | Cedar Grove, NC | Tilapia fish farming | Website

Thompson’s Prawn Farm | Orange County, NC | Harvests and sells prawns | Website | Email: joe@thompsonprawnfarm.com | Tel. 919.563.3220

YF Urban Organics | Birmingham, AL | Grows and sells 20 different fruits, vegetables and herbs; raises and sells chicken, quail, turkey, fish and fresh eggs; sheep coming soon | Facebook

Kaia Shivers covers news, features and the diaspora.

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