The Martha’s Vineyard Sustainable Seafood Collaborative

$362,000

We have launched an urgent fundraising campaign to create the MV Sustainable Seafood Collaborative. We seek to raise $500,000 by February 2021 so the MVSSC can be operational by the start of the fishing season in April.

  • To date, we have raised $362,00 in pledges and donations towards our $500,000 goal!

  • This start-up capital will allow the program to operate for all of 2021

 

  • Our aim is for the program to be financially self-sustaining thereafter

MV Sustainable Seafood Collaborative Goals:

  • Save the 2021 commercial fishing season for Martha’s Vineyard’s locally owned, small-boat commercial fishing industry

 

  • Help preserve the iconic Menemsha waterfront as a working harbor for years to come

 

  • Stabilize over 100 local fishing businesses

 

  • ​Increase the availability of locally sourced seafood for Island restaurants and markets

 

  • ​Utilize surplus fish to create meals to be donated to families in need

Menemsha harbor building to be used as the headquarters for the MV Sustainable Seafood Collaborative. 

In order to move forward with the Martha’s Vineyard Sustainable Seafood Collaborative, we need to raise $500,000 by February. Why the rush? There is a lot to do to get the facility ready to operate for the start of the commercial fishing season in April. Repairs need to be made on the building, equipment needs to be purchased, permits to purchase and process fish need to be obtained, employees need to be hired, and seafood certification courses taken.

We currently have a matching grant from a generous Chilmark resident, doubling all donations between $25 to $2,500! 

You will be taken to a Paypal donation page.

Please select

'MV Sustainable Seafood Collaborative'

from the drop-down menu.

Thank you to our wonderful supporters!

$100,000+

Sarah Bernard and James Seppala

$50,000 to $99,999

Cronin Family

Betsy and Jesse Fink*

Fred Khedouri and Sarah Glazer

$10,000 to $49,999

The Fialkow Family Foundation at

The Boston Foundation

John McDonald

Alec and Sally Walsh

$2,500 to $9,999

Campaign-Meter (1).png

$362,000

Anonymous

Steve Bernier

Carol Biondi

Kenneth DiPietro

Alex Finklestein

Deborah Hancock

Elise and Greg Green

John Keene Excavation

Vivian and Lionel Spiro

Stanley Startzell and Debbi Zetterberg

Up to $2,499

Anonymous

Warren Adams

Magdalena Andres

Elizabeth Barnes

Donald Barrett

Brooke Bartletta

Valerie Becker

Beetlebung Tree Care

Linda Benton

Deborah Birnbach

Karen Bishop

Janice Blum

Mohawk Bolin

Kib Bramhall

Carol Brush

Daniel Cahillane

Edward Cardoza

Katie Carroll

Allison Cameron Parry

Deborah Colgan

Sharon Cooke

Norma Costain and Geoff Kontje

Judith Crowley

Theresa Culletto

John Cushman

David Damroth

Abigail Dillon

Vicki Divoll

Niaz Dory

John Durovsik

Ed and Lea Edmundson

Linda Fairstein

Corinne Field

Fred Fournier/Landscope

Ann Freedberg

Robert Gaffey

Patricia Garbutt

Marcia Gethin-Jones

Brian Giles

Taylor Gould

Gerald Green

Emma Green-Beach

Beth Harris

Clayton Henke

Guinevere Higgins

Janet Hofmann

John Jacobs

Lauren Kelly

Lisa Kerns

David Kolb

Joan Kriegstein

Kaitlyn Kurth

Rebecca and Paxson Laird

Peter Lambos

Richard Lambos

Elizabeth Laskin

Cilla Lavin

Elizabeth Lee

Ann Lees

Clem Littleton

Gregory Lott

James Lukas

Barbara MacLaughlin

Joshua Mangerson

Courtney Marek

Matt Mayhew

David Merry

Heidi Modaro

Bob and Susan Morgenthau

Never Nominated Productions

Julia Neville

Andrew Noyes

Liz Olsen

Kirk Oswald

Ben Palaisa

Alex Pardo

Helen and Riggs Parker

Carollyn Philip

Francis Pitts

Theresa Razmakhnin

Ellen Rogers

Cynthia Roy

Dardanella Slavin

Valerie Sonnenthal

Jeffrey Spear

Julia Spiro

Bonnie Stacy

Nancy Strauss

Beth Swartz

Jeanne Swope

Zoe Thompson

Elissa Turnbull

Lynn Vera

Mary Vivian

Valerie Vivian

Charles Wendel

*A special thank you to Betsy and Jesse Fink for their catalytic financial and advisory support over the past few months as MVFPT developed this initiative!

To learn more about our plans check out the following news articles and read below:

The Problem:

In October 2020, the Island’s largest year-round wholesale seafood buyer, the Menemsha Fish House (MFH), permanently closed its doors. This closure could not have come at a worse time for Martha’s Vineyard’s small-boat fishing industry. Without this wholesale market, many of the Island’s fishermen are left without a large outlet for their catch. This will force some to travel to the mainland and others to end their fishing businesses entirely. Without any intervention, this market closure will almost certainly lead to the decline of our community fishing industry, decay of our working waterfront, and permanent loss of the authentic character and vitality of the Island’s harbors.

The pandemic brought unprecedented challenges in 2020 and increased the strain on Island businesses both on and off the water. Our fishermen have been navigating unpredictable market prices, lower demand, and the need to create new ways to sell their catch. In response, the Martha’s Vineyard Fishermen’s Preservation Trust launched our Community Seafood Program which helped fishermen and fed families in need by purchasing over 47,000 pounds of seafood from local fishermen, processing it into meals, and donating these meals to the island’s various charitable food organizations. While this program was very successful and we plan to continue it as needed, having a larger wholesale market is essential for the survival of many commercial fishing operations. Our Island fishermen need a way to sell the local seafood they harvest and have it distributed to Island markets, restaurants, and off-Island buyers.

Our Solution:

With the critical need for the Island’s community fishermen to have an outlet to sell their catch, we aim to launch the Martha’s Vineyard Sustainable Seafood Collaborative, which the MVFPT will operate as a local seafood wholesale buyer in MFH’s former harbor location starting in the spring of 2021. This new program will be capable of purchasing hundreds of thousands of pounds of local seafood year-round and distributing it on and off the Island, a vital service for Vineyard fishermen. Along with the opportunity to take over the former MFH location, we are also planning to bring Peter Lambos, MFH’s former General Manager, aboard as the Martha’s Vineyard Sustainable Seafood Collaborative’s Director of Operations. Pete’s direct, hands-on experience in managing MFH’s seafood purchasing and wholesale operation is an invaluable resource in successfully launching this new MVFPT initiative. Pete is a born and raised Islander and has spent nearly his entire professional career in service to his community.

Peter Lambos, working at the Menemsha Fish House

Prior to joining the Vineyard’s commercial fishing industry at MFH, Pete served as Executive Director of the MV Boys & Girls Club (2007-2016) and as General Manager of the MV Ice Arena (2016-2018). Pete’s community ties and experience in both non-profit and seafood industry management make him a perfect fit to lead this initiative. The Martha’s Vineyard Sustainable Seafood Collaborative will support the mission of the Martha’s Vineyard Fishermen’s Preservation Trust by 1) providing a competitive wholesale market for local fishermen and aquaculture farmers to sell their entire catch, 2) educating the public and customers to increase the value and demand for locally caught and produced seafood, and 3) preserving the culture and heritage of the historically vital fishing industry on the Island. As a completely local operation run by our non-profit organization, the Martha’s Vineyard Sustainable Seafood Collaborative will be focused on serving the Island’s community fishermen and supplying the Island with local seafood.

Fundraising Goal and Timeline:

In order to move forward with the Martha’s Vineyard Sustainable Seafood Collaborative, we need to raise $500,000 by February. Why the rush? There is a lot to do to get the facility ready to operate for the start of the commercial fishing season in April. Repairs need to be made on the building, equipment needs to be purchased, permits to purchase and process fish need to be obtained, employees need to be hired, and seafood certification courses taken.

Call us: 

(508) 687-0344

Write us: 

P.O. Box 96, Menemsha, MA 02552

mvfishermen@gmail.com

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