9/13/08 C4 Screening and Workshop “Farming the Seas” 渔之大海

Farming the SeasWhen: September 13, 2008 (Saturday, 1:00 pm)
Where: Chinese Culture Center, 750 Kearny St, 4th Floor, “Pine” meeting room, San Francisco
Admission: FREE (RSVP Encouraged)

Chinese Culture Center Cinema (C4) is pleased to present a special installment of our current film festival. Alongside our screening of Farming the Seas, we are holding a workshop to discuss and learn about the issues facing seafood resources and their relevance to us as individuals and as a community.

Ocean fisheries have been depleted by more than 90% over the past century due to over harvesting by humans, and the loss of resources from aquatic ecosystems endangers cultures that utilize those resources for food and traditions. For the Chinese American community, the idea of maintaining sea resources in an environmentally sustainable matter is practical. Seafood plays a vital role in the cultural food of Chinese American diets, as most family gatherings will contain a fish dish. Chinese culture emphasizes prosperity for future generations, but this is only possible if resources are managed responsibly.

The workshop includes a partial screening of Farming the Seas, a panel discussion, and tips on how to make conscious consumption choices as an individual. Free magazines, recipes, handouts, and light refreshments will be provided. All are welcome, though material is suitable for a more mature audience (highschool and older).

The Moderator:

Derek Emmons is a third year environmental studies major at UC Santa Cruz. He is a 2007 In Search of Roots intern with the Chinese Culture Center.

The Panel:

Olivia Wu is the Executive Chef at Google. Her restaurant on the Google campus at Mountain View serves Asian small-plates fare, with a core of traditional Chinese menus and authentic dishes. She was previously a writer with the San Francisco Chronicle Food and Wine section. In 2006, she was assigned by the paper to report on food and culture from Shanghai.

Sara Randall
is Program Director for The Institute for Fisheries Resources (IFR) where she oversees and implements projects that aim to restore and protect marine resources and the fishermen and coastal communities which depend on the resources. For the last four years she has worked to unite the United State’s entire commercial fishing industry into a national coalition, called the Commercial Fishermen of America, and educate Americans about the profession of commercial fishing.

Al Cheng
is an educator of 30 years, renown for his involvement in the Chinese American Community, and served on the Chinese Culture Center governing board during the past 20 years. He has been elected president and co-chairperson for three terms each, and is currently the center’s executive director. Cheng is co-founder of the In Search of Roots program, an 18 year old program that guides Chinese American youth in genealogy and to their ancestral villages in China’s Pearl River Delta.

Jesse Marsh is Fisheries Research Manager for Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Sustainable Seafood Initiative and focuses on sustainability evaluations of wild-caught seafood products for consumers and businesses. Jesse received a B.A. in Environmental Science from Boston University, and a Master of Environmental Management from Duke University. Her passion for marine conservation began 10 years ago, while spending a semester in Baja California Sur researching the sustainability of fisheries and fishing communities there.

About the Film:
Farming the Seas (2004) English/ No Subtitles
Aquaculture was intended to take the pressure off ocean fish stocks and help avert a global food shortage, but many experts now believe that some forms of “fish farming” are actually creating more problems than they’re solving. This film journeys around the world documenting the most important stories as they unfold. From the indigenous tribes of British Columbia to the large-scale operations of multinational corporations, from Mediterranean fishermen to Thai shrimp farmers, Farming the Seas gathers perspectives from around the globe as it examines the problems and the promises of this emerging industry.


“Well-crafted and important environmental documentary that combines superb research, production values and journalism…My students were educated, entertained, and inspired.” David L. Brown, City College of San Francisco

“Excellent footage of aquaculture operations…It is easy to see why Farming the Seas won the award for Best Marine Conservation Message at the International Wildlife Film Festival and a host of other awards as well. It is well researched, well edited and a timely and interesting look at the potential problems associated with aquaculture. I highly recommend this video to all libraries.” Barbara Butler, Educational Media Reviews Online

“An outstanding job is done in contrasting the farming of [salmon, shrimp, and tuna] with the more sustainable Chinese practice of raising non-predatory fish and shellfish… The narration by Peter Coyote is excellent. Numerous short interviews effectively feature both advocates and opponents of aquaculture enterprises, including indigenous people, scientists, and industry representatives. With adequate background information provided prior to viewing, the program would be suitable for students in ninth grade and above.” Tim Maret, Shippensburg University for School Library Journal

For more information about C4, and a listing of the entire year’s program, visit our 2008 Film Series page.