FRIDAY NIGHT might be fish night, but the type of fish to choose depends on the month, according to new advice from the Marine Conservation Society (MCS).
The charity's “Fish of the Month” guides shoppers to increase the sustainability of their seafood choices by avoiding eating species in their breeding season, and baby fish, and recommending fish are only eaten above the size and age at which they mature.
Twelve leading chefs have supplied a recipe for the month in which it's best to eat their chosen fish. In March, for example, restaurateur Mitch Tonks cooks up steamed mussels from the Devon coast with bay and chilli. Mussels spawn between April and August meaning March is the best month to enjoy them. Macdonald Hotels & Resorts currently has mussels as part of its seasonal menu, alongside Norwegian skrei, known as Norwegian miracle cod.
Meanwhile, Caroline Bennett, owner of the sushi chain, Moshi Moshi, chooses Dab as a great choice for September – it spawns between April and June.
Also on the 12-month calendar are Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall who chooses pouting for July; food critic and chef, Allegra McEvedy, who picks out red gurnard for February; and owner of the Duke of Cambridge gastro pub, Geetie Singh, who goes for pilchards in October.
MCS fisheries officer Bernadette Clarke said leading chefs can also have a role in influencing consumer's choices by publically committing to and only sourcing their fish from the most sustainable supplies available. “For lovers of seafood who are already aware of choosing their fish from the most sustainable fisheries, 'Fish of the Month' can now help them go one stage further and eat the right fish in the right month and at the right size,” she added.