Manifesto for sourcing (and life)
Sometime in the past few years we entered the Anthropocene: an age where human activities are the dominant force on the plant. The Anthropocene demands that we use our dominance to shape the direction of human and ecological health for the better. The other option isn’t pretty. Food, how we get it and what we eat, is one of the places where individuals have the most power to make decisions. Everyday, we vote with our bodies; and the sum of those votes define the quality of life that we extend to others and that we enjoy for ourselves.
“Sustainability” goes beyond the food we make and our operations at Miya’s—the heart of it is in how we relate to people and communities. We aren’t “sustainable” because we prepare a fish that isn’t endangered and won’t poison you. We are sustainable when we serve you delicious food that connects you with the possibility of thriving ecosystems and regenerative human behavior.
Constantly ask ourselves two central questions based on information about the environment, culture, social, and economic aspects:
1. Should we be eating this food at all?
2. If so, what is the best source, rearing or catching method, and vendor?
As a rule of thumb, we can minimize our ecological impacts by eating low on the food chain (like plants). However, animals are central to our ecosystems, our culture, and our cuisine. We believe that catching, raising, and eating them wisely brings people together and supports the regeneration of ecosystems. Historically, pastoral and agrarian cultures have had a supportive relationship. Livestock—terrestrial and aquatic—convert otherwise inedible materials into highly nutritious food and provide insurance when other crops fail. Critically, they are a key part of cycling nutrients and energy in any natural system. The modern food system has forced a divorce between humans, raising plants, and raising livestock. Unhinging these relationships has changed natural cycles that should feed each other into industrial lines that extract materials for human consumption and spit them out into wastes.
We look to purchase from responsible wild fisheries while creating and supporting new aquaculture systems that have a net positive environmental impact and provide meaningful jobs. For example, we buy our tilapia and trout from highly efficient aquaculture facilities in Connecticut and we are working with the Thimble Island Oyster Company, the University of Connecticut, and the Bridgeport Aquaculture School to create the Connecticut’s first multi-trophic (multiple species) aquaculture operation in Long Island Sound.
Ariana Bain, Eva Gladek y Tom Bosschaert
Departmento de Sostenibilidad de Miya’s Sushi
*The above photograph is of Ari and Eva eating grasshoppers from our Agricultural Pest Menu.