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Kitty Food Produced By Slaves

Slavery in the SE Asian FIshing Industry is common. In this case a well known Company, Nestle decided to audit it’s supply chain to determine if any of the fish caught by slaves was entering the chain and being sold by the company. This is one of the few proactive moves by a Food Company to root out unscrupulous suppliers.

Nestlé​ admits slavery and coercion used in catching its seafood

Impoverished migrant workers in Thailand are sold or lured by false promises and forced to catch and process fish that ends up in global food giant Nestlé SA’s supply chains.

The unusual disclosure comes from Geneva-based Nestlé​ SA itself, which in an act of self-policing planned to announce the conclusions of its yearlong internal investigation on Monday. The study found virtually all U.S. and European companies buying seafood from Thailand are exposed to the same risks of abuse in their supply chains.

Nestlé​ SA, among the biggest food companies in the world, launched the investigation in December 2014, after reports from news outlets and nongovernmental organizations tied brutal and largely unregulated working conditions to their shrimp, prawns and Purina brand pet foods. Its findings echo those of The Associated Press in reports this year on slavery in the seafood industry that have resulted in the rescue of more than 2,000 fishermen.

Labourers from poor countries

The labourers come from Thailand’s much poorer neighbours Myanmar and Cambodia. Brokers illegally charge them fees to get jobs, trapping them into working on fishing vessels and at ports, mills and seafood farms in Thailand to pay back more money than they can ever earn.

“Sometimes, the net is too heavy and workers get pulled into the water and just disappear. When someone dies, he gets thrown into the water,” one Burmese worker told the non-profit organization Veritécommissioned by Nestle.

“I have been working on this boat for 10 years. I have no savings. I am barely surviving,” said another. “Life is very difficult here.”

Nestlé​ said it would post the reports online — as well as a detailed yearlong solution strategy throughout 2016 — as part of ongoing efforts to protect workers. It has promised to impose new requirements on all potential suppliers and train boat owners and captains about human rights, possibly with a demonstration vessel and rewards for altering their practices. It also plans to bring in outside auditors and assign a high-level Nestle manager to make sure change is underway.

Thai and Burmese Workers Held in Cages

Nestlé​ pledges change

“As we’ve said consistently, forced labour and human rights abuses have no place in our supply chain,” Magdi Batato, Nestlé’s executive vice-president in charge of operations, said in a written statement. “Nestlé believes that by working with suppliers we can make a positive difference to the sourcing of ingredients.”

Nestlé​ is not a major purchaser of seafood in Southeast Asia but does some business in Thailand, primarily for its Purina brand Fancy Feast cat food.

For its study, Verité interviewed more than 100 people, including about 80 workers from Myanmar and Cambodia, as well as boat owners, shrimp farm owners, site supervisors and representatives of Nestlé​’s suppliers. They visited fish ports and fishmeal packing plants, shrimp farms and docked fishing boats, all in Thailand.

Boat captains and managers, along with workers, confirmed violence and danger in the Thai seafood sector, a booming industry which exports $7 billion of products a year, although managers said workers sometimes got hurt because they were drunk and fighting.

Boat captains rarely checked ages of workers, and Verité found underage workers forced to fish. Workers said they labour without rest, their food and water are minimal, outside contact is cut off, and they are given fake identities to hide that they are working illegally.

Nestle found that some of the slave product wound up in their cat food

Generally, the workers studied by Verité were catching and processing fish into fishmeal fed to shrimp and prawns. But the Amherst, Massachusetts-based group said many of the problems they observed are systemic and not unique to Nestlé​; migrant workers throughout Thailand’s seafood sector are vulnerable to abuses as they are recruited, hired and employed, said Verite.

Monday’s disclosure is rare. While multinational companies in industries from garments to electronics say they investigate allegations of abuse in their supply chains, they rarely share negative findings….Read the rest here

 
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Posted by on November 24, 2015 in International Terrorism, Uncategorized

 

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Shotgun Shutdown…Not Just For Marriages!

Now the Rethuglys are really getting ready to step in it.

It’s “Huntin’ Season Y’all”! And what that means is a lot of Americans who aren’t rich like a Rothschild and own a few hundred prime acres can grab their boots, their cameras or guns, or fishing rods and go out to one of the National Wildlife areas set aside specifically so Average Joe doesn’t have to be a Rothschild to be able to enjoy the wilderness…And hunt and fish like a King.

Now remember, in feudal Europe, hunting preserves were set up for the royalty. Getting caught with a rabbit on the end of your arrow on, or anywhere near the King’s land, usually meant you winding up in far worse shape than the rabbit.

There was a good reason to get rid of Kings.

For years, Republicans have tried to claim all those hunting and fishing and hiking folks as their own. Mistakenly believing the guys in the Izaak Walton League are the same guys in the NRA….Wrong.

Now…An an “unintended consequence” of shutting the Government down…

All those National areas are shut down.

So what is going to happen when the NRA gang can’t take their machine guns and kill some Bambi?

The Government Shutdown Is Hammering Hunters, Fishers, And Their Communities

As the federal government shutdown that began October 1 stretches into its second week, it is now threatening the beginning of hunting and fishing seasons, and hunters, fishers, and sportsmen’s groups aren’t taking that news quietly.

As major hunting seasons begin across the country, seven sportsmen organizations joined on a conference call Monday to call on Congress to end the shutdown, which has closed 329 federal wildlife refuges to hunting and more than 270 to fishing. More than 35 million Americans hunted in 2011, according to a U.S. Fish and Wildlife survey, and of those, more than half will hunt or fish on public lands at some point in their lives, Whit Fosburgh, president and CEO of the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership, said on the call.

“Sportsmen and women in this country, we have a very financial and very personal stake in this federal budget discussion,” Dr. Steve Williams, president of the Wildlife Management Institute and a former director of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, said. “Frankly, I think that Congress’ failure to act is really a slap in the face to all of us in the country and in particular to 37 million hunters and anglers.”

For some hunters and fishers, that means the loss of a basic yearly ritual: hunting with family or friends for deer, waterfowl, or other animals. For others, it means the loss of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity: in states like Colorado or New Mexico, big game hunting licenses can take more than a decade to get, meaning hunters who finally got a license but miss this season may have to wait years for another chance, if another ever comes. For fishers, it means the closure of public lakes, rivers, and boat ramps maintained by federal authorities.

But the major effect is on local communities, small business, and people who depend on hunting and fishing for their livelihoods. The wildlife-related recreation economy is huge: in 2011, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service estimated that it amounted to $144 billion annually. That economy is made up of hunters and fishers, birdwatchers and environmental enthusiasts, but also of hunting guides who make their living during major hunting seasons. It includes retailers and businesses that depend on $86 billion in direct hunting- and fishing-related sales. Small communities that have cropped up around public lands depend on revenues generated by hunting- and fishing-related tourism during this time of year. All of that is jeopardized by the shutdown.

“These three months of hunting season are like Christmas to a lot of these rural communities,” Land Tawnyey, the executive director of Backcountry Hunters and Anglers, said. “They make all their money in three months. It’s vitally important to their economy.” Tawney said he has already canceled hunts on public lands that would have otherwise taken place, and he’s not alone: hunting trips across the country are facing the effects of the shutdown.

Hunters and fishers also generate more than $1.5 billion in revenues each year through licenses. Since most of those are processed at the state level, they shouldn’t be affected by a shutdown. But some licenses, for waterfowl and other species, are done federally and could be impacted. States could also see a drop in license revenue if hunters stay home because they can’t access public lands, Williams said.

The shutdown is also killing environmental conservation efforts.

And that’s not all: the shutdown is also hampering environment conservation and habitat maintenance efforts on federal lands, as well as efforts to protect endangered species on federal lands.

National Wildlife Refuges, comprised of more than 150 million acres of public land, “are some of the most highly-managed lands in the country,” Desiree Sorenson-Groves, vice president of government affairs for the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, said. This time of year, refuges host hunts of everything from waterfowl to rabbits and small animals to large game. Those hunts come alongside habitat-maintenance and conservation efforts meant to help “mimic some of the natural processes we’ve changed,” she said. Right now, “a lot of the critical habitat work isn’t being done.”

“One of the big factors that we’re seeing is that habitat projects for wildlife that are long-term are being shut down,” Miles Moretti, president and CEO of the Mule Deer Foundation said. “Some of these projects are time-sensitive. They need to be done in the fall. They may not occur this year at all, or they may have to be put off and not done. Those our critical to some of our wildlife species, especially some of our big game animals.”

These industries have already faced the axe from budget cuts and sequestration, as environmental conservation efforts important to hunters and fishers faced budget cuts in recent years, including under sequestration at the beginning of 2013. Sequestration included a 17 percent cut to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, Williams said, and the most recent House Republican budget plan includes a 27 percent cut to the service’s budget and includes no funding for land, water, wetland, or wildlife conservation grants. “We’re tired of non-proportional cuts to national resource interests,” he said.

If the government and those lands don’t re-open soon, all of that may be lost, since there’s no delaying hunting season. “Hunting season ends when it ends, when the animals move,” Fosburgh said. If the shutdown doesn’t end before then, there’s no bringing back everything it has already cost America’s hunters and fishers — or the environment and communities that depend on them.

 

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River Monsters Failure to Catch

As an avid fisherman – I started watching the River Monsters series becoming rapidly bored with the false sense of drama  over the large fish supposedly attacking humans swimming, and the lack of focus on the fish themselves and their ecosystems.

Never to disappoint, it seems the show has discovered Bull Sharks. A species of shark which inhabits most of the world’s oceans, and is capable of living in fresh or salt water. Bull sharks are the most dangerous to humans of the shark species, accounting for the vast majority of bites – simply because the region they inhabit tends to be around the shallows in inlets where food is washed out by the receding tide. Areas where people tend to swim and surf. I have caught 4 footers, and even an 8 footer going after game species such as Grouper and Rockfish as by-catch. But I have yet to hear of a Bull Shark attacking anyone in fresh water. Hooking one is no big deal – you know you have one on the line when it hits like a freight train, and then instantly starts to roll to spit out the hook.

A full grown Bull shark

Was reading  book about the history of the development of the Washington, DC area – and was somewhat surprised to see that in the 1800’s a 12 foot Bull shark was caught off the pier in Georgetown. Of course the Potomac River was about 3 times the size it is now then. But it is not unusual to see salt water species, such as crabs just a few miles below the city even today.

If the show ever gets around to actually providing information about the fish species, showing the fish, and talking about the habitat that enables the fish to reach huge size – then I might tune in again. But I, for one am really tired of the rather lame attempts to make things dramatic. In the series premier, they catch a truly glorious fish – a 350 lb Grouper, and virtually ignore it. Geez…

‘River Monsters’ Premiere: The Search For A Bull Shark; Exciting Or Too Slow? (VIDEO)

Jeremy Wade and “River Monsters” (Sun., 9 p.m. ET on Animal Planet) returned for a fourth season, with Wade on the hunt for a bigger and better monster. He came up slightly short with a juvenile freshwater bull shark, though it was still six feet in length. Ironically, while looking for the bull shark, Wade found a seven foot long, 350 pound grouper.

A grouper might not traditionally be thought of as dangerous or a monster, per se, but when dealing with that size, it certainly seems pretty monstrous. The TCPalmsays the show is a “fun reminder that we have some special creatures sharing our environment with us.”

The New York Daily News, on the other hand, was a little disappointed with this premiere. They feel that the series needs to talk less about the monsters sharing the world with us, and spend more time showing them.

A little Jackie Wilson. Got nothing to do with fishing, Monsters, the River, current TV shows, or Jeremy Wade’s failure to catch fish…

But is infinitely more entertaining.

 
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Posted by on April 2, 2012 in Great American Rip-Off

 

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Gulf Spill The End of the Road for Black Oystermen?

Oystering, particularly “tonging”, the way most Louisiana Oystermen do it, is brutal work. If I had to pick a hell to which to send the BP Executives, and their paid off political and government cronies – it would be tonging for Oysters on the Chesapeake Bay on an aluminum skiff in January and February. It is brutal, backbreaking work, which builds a kind of character you don’t often see in a Boardroom.

This is Oyster Tonging. The 12-15' long tongs are used to gather the oysters from the bottom - sometimes in 6-10' of water. This is hard, dangerous work in the Chesapeake, in that Oystering is only done in the winter. The water temps may only be 45, and often Oystermen have to break ice to get out of the creeks and river to the bay. If you slip and fall in - you may well die. In Louisiana they Oyster in the summer - the work is still hard.

Another victim of the BP Oil disaster may well be black coastal communities along the lower Mississippi still recovering from the ravages of Katrina…

Is It Twilight for Louisiana’s Black Oystermen?

The marina of this Mississippi River Delta community usually teems with fishermen, oystermen and shrimpers. But the scene on Monday afternoon fell far short of that. Only a single crew could be seen filling crates with plump blue crabs freshly pulled from the bays to the east, which is among the few stretches of nearby water where oil hasn’t been found. Men sat on stools outside the marina’s shop, sipping cold beers in the humid air. “There’s nothing else to do,” says Shawn Encalade, 47, a boat welder, looking out at rows of marooned vessels.

The worst oil spill in American history is being measured in environmental and economic terms — especially given the threat it poses to Louisiana’s $2.4 billion seafood industry. But the cultural toll must also be considered. The disaster may signal the end of Louisiana towns like Phoenix and Point a la Hache, which hug the Mississippi River and comprise one of the state’s largest stretches of African-American fishing communities. Read the rest of this entry »

 
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Posted by on June 10, 2010 in American Genocide

 

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Asian Carp – The Jumping Fish

Maybe I’m missing something here. A fish which grows up to 4 ft long and 100 lbs, which jumps and fights like the best game fish…

Sounds to me, that if you want to get rid of the Asian Carp – all you have to do is to declare open season, and pay a bounty of $1 a fish. Assuming the Asian Carp is edible, which is how it got here in the first place…

Convert the captured fish into food for food banks.

When I was a kid, one of my favorite ways to raise my own money was the 2 cent to 5 cent return fee on glass bottles. $3 was enough for a movie, popcorn,, and a drink at the kid’s matinee, or bowling a couple of games. I could even afford to buy one of those plastic model planes or cars… All it took usually was a walk down one of the local country roads with my trusty Radio Flyer Wagon.

$1 a fish? As a kid it would be me and my trusty Zebco, until I could afford a Penn and go after the big boys!

 
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Posted by on February 9, 2010 in You Know It's Bad When...

 

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