Commercial Fishing Inspector (with Natalie Posdaljian)

That was the only thing that was going to keep you alive if your boat was sinking and I was thinking in my head, “If I ever have to wear this in real life I’m going to quite this job”…and then I did!

Do you ever wonder where your food came from?  What sorts of approvals and checks and balances it had to pass before making its way to you?  As we recently learned in the ‘Organic Farmer’ episode, getting produce on your table is not as simple as you might think.  For better or for worse, if you live in the Western world your food will endure quite a bit of scrutiny before it ever makes it to you.  Today we learn about another side of this food chain.  Natalie was recently employed as a North Pacific Groundfish Observer for the National Oceanic Atmospheric Administration's (NOAA) Fisheries Monitoring and Analysis Division (FMA)…quite a mouthfull.  Natalie’s long title meant that she lived on fishing boats off the coast of Alaska and made sure that everyone was following the rules.  Thanks to people like Natalie sustainable fishing that makes minimal impact on the overall ecosystem is a reality in the majority of the United States.

They call us fish police, fish cops, because that’s how they see us.
My training should just be called 1001 ways to die. Everything on a fishing boat…you’re constantly just watching out for something that could kill you, the weather being my biggest fear.

Interview Contents

3:45 - How Natalie heard about being a fish observer.
5:00 - The locations you can do this.
7:15 - Natalie’s background and degree.
8:30 - The prep for getting to Alaska.
10:45 - The types of fishing and the variety of fish.
13:00 - What fish you should buy.
17:15 - The proliferation of fishing regulation.
21:00 - The strange living situations on the boats.
24:30 - The things that Natalie and her organization are keeping track of.
28:30 - The ocean is getting more acidic.
33:45 - Back to the things Natalie is tracking.
37:30 - Learning about the varieties of fish.
40:00 - The things Natalie is supposed to write people up for.
43:45 - Seasickness.
46:00 - Near death experience.
50:00 - Type 2 fun.
53:00 - Staying out in bad weather.
57:30 - Pay.
59:00 - The background you need to do this.


No links today.



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Livin it up!