Saturday, October 31, 2009

Dear Botak Jones

I had specially planned my dinner at Botak Jones Woodlands last night because firstly, it is near my house and secondly, Botak Jones had introduced a new dish on the menu which I was interested to know - Char-grilled Mahi Mahi.

As a marine biologist, I am aware and concern of the current situation of declining wild fish stocks and your Mahi-Mahi dish fascinated me. I am very glad to know that you guys had made an effort to let consumers know the source of your Mahi-Mahi and that your Mahi-Mahi came from sustainable fishery, as clearly stated on the promotional menu. *thumbs up*

I then approached your staff to ask if fish from the other fish dishes such as Fish & Chip and Alaskan Pollock also came from sustainable fishery, just like that of Mahi-Mahi. One of your staff, who was manning the cashier, however, did not understand what 'sustainable fishery' means. So I explained the term 'sustainable fishery' by asking if the fish used in these 2 dishes are caught the same way as Mahi-Mahi. She replied that she wass not sure and added to explain to me that Mahi-Mahi is a dolphin fish which belongs to the dolphin family. Almost immediately, she grabbed another male staff next to her and asked him where the fish came from. Fortunately, this male staff seem to know what I was asking and had told me that Botak Jones use cultured catfish for Fish & Chip and wild-caught Alaskan Pollock. He, however, did not mention if Alaskan pollock is from sustainable fishery as I know, Alaskan pollock is heavily fished.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Botak Jones for making the initiative to raise public awareness of fish that come from sustainable fishery. By knowing where these fish come from, it put ease in consumers who are environmentally conscious. It would be good that, in the future, details of the fish such as species name, country of product, wild-caught or cultured, sustainable or not, can be inserted in the menu so that consumers know what they are eating.

I would also like Botak Jones to, however, train their staffs on the knowledge of the fish they serve. For your information, dolphin fish is not a cetacean. This is a major mistake. I really appreciated the male staff who knew his stuffs and the source of fish though and I hope all staff in Botak Jones can answer customers' questions correctly in the future. It would be good to let your staff watch 'The End of the line' by Rupert Murray( as well. It is a documentary film that talks about the current status of fish stocks due to overfishing.

Good job, Botak Jones. You've made the first step to save the declining fish stock by using fish from sustainable fishery and culture. I hope my feedbacks have been valuable and I hope to see more of them coming soon in my next visit.

4 hours later
They replied on my feedback

I think they deserve national recognition
& I will write into Straits Times when I'm free

Thank you Botak Jones. I hope other big seafood restaurant can do the same too.

No comments: