Category Archives: Food Retail

Consumer retail experiences

Challenges in Expanding Regional Food Ventures

Note: This summary is from my newest post on The Snap Blog, where I will be blogging going forward.

When I blur my eyes, I see sustainable food on every kitchen table. The ramifications of this vision are tremendous, which is why pursing it is not for the faint of heart or timid. The obstacles are equally substantial, starting with an entrenched and massive industrial food system.

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Introducing The Snap Blog…Our New Home!

Hello Readers,

I’m guessing by now that at least some of you may have thought I fell off the face of the earth. Close.

Instead, about six months ago I jumped feet first into my own ProFood venture – Sugarsnap located in Burlington, Vermont’s Intervale. Candidly, I had no idea how consuming this transition was going to be and expected to continue writing on a regular basis.

Well, after putting together a comprehensive business plan and private placement memorandum, I am happy to report that we have nearly completed our initial fund raising, and will soon accelerate our expansion plans. These changes are allowing me to start breathing again about the critical issues addressed at Every Kitchen Table.

The exciting part is that I am now partnering with some great people that have their own stories to tell. So, with this post I am formally merging Every Kitchen Table into The Snap Blog, the official blog of Sugarsnap.

You will once again see me posting on a regular basis, and will get the added benefit of reading the well-informed thoughts of my Sugarsnap partners. It may take us a couple months to hit our stride, but rest assured we will and the content will be great.

See you on The Snap Blog!


Rob Smart (a.k.a., @Jambutter)

P.S. You can also follow Sugarsnap on Twitter and Facebook.

Man v. Fish: Knockout Punch or Co-Existence?

Think of the last time your eyes were opened to something that scared the hell out of you.

Got it?

Now find a way to see The End of the Line, the world’s first documentary about the devastating effect of overfishing that describes what is really going on in the deep, unseen oceans around the globe. After seeing the devastation man and technology have been inflicting on one marine ecosystem or species after another, you will quickly recognize that feeling of being scared straight.

After all, what you will be facing is the very real possibility of a world without fish.

Think about that for a moment.

Some experts are predicting this will happen by 2048 if things don’t change, which means it will take place within most of our lifetimes.

How is this possible? Wouldn’t we have heard about this by now if it was so dire? I had the same questions, but the facts in the film paint a picture that includes a view of the end of the line:

  • Current global fishing fleet could catch world supply of fish four times over – every year!
  • 1.4 billion hooks are being set annually, enough to circle the globe 550 times
  • Bluefin tuna catch used to be in the thousands; in last 10 years the catch has declined by 80 percent
  • Fishing industry is disregarding ICCAT 29,500 ton quota on bluefin tuna; actual catch near 60,000 tons; scientists believe catch of 10,000 tons is necessary to allow recovery of species to begin
  • One-tenth of what is caught is thrown back, often already dead

Its difficult to comprehend all the things that would be impacted by such a catastrophe. Most obvious to people is the impact it would have on feeding an increasingly hungry world. With over one billion people already malnourished, and the global population expected to reach nine billion people by 2050, the impact of significant declines in fish as food would be devastating.

Thankfully, The End of the Line identifies clear paths forward to stop and then reverse 80-90 percent declines in catches of many popular species, including the bluefin tuna, cod, numerous species of sharks and more.

For most of us, the best thing we can do is become aware of what is happening. Knowledge is power. And the fastest and easiest way to do that is to see The End of the Line.

In the meantime, please consider visiting one or more of the following links to begin taking real, everyday actions:

  • Watch The End of the Line on Babelgum
  • Find/Organize a Screening of the Film
  • Claim Your Piece of the Ocean
  • Download Pocket Good Fish Guide
  • Rate Restaurants on How Well They Support Sustainable Fishing
  • Visit Monterey Bay Aquarium