We bring fresh, local seafood to Philadelphia’s diverse communities.
Everyone deserves nice things.
Nice things — like a fulfilling job that pays well, and delicious, top-quality food — are things that everyone deserves to have: our members, our harvesters, our staff, and our students.
Do thoughtful, place-based work.
We work in Philadelphia and the Jersey shore. Working in these communities is joyful and complicated, and not one-size-fits-all.
We do a lot of learning in this work, and we want to support everyone involved to learn as well - about fish, about the ocean, about seafood, about each other, and more.
"Americans only know how to eat cod and salmon fillets. We need to teach them how to eat other kinds of fish!"
She thought to herself,
"Maybe we’re not thinking about all Americans..."
Talia, who is Chinese-American, thought back to all the seafood her family had eaten as a child. Crabs, lobster, jellyfish, scallops, shrimp, clams, jellyfish, abalone, whole fish, and more. And she thought about her other friends of color who also ate a lot of seafood. And she began to wonder what would happen if we connected local seafood harvesters with culturally diverse eating communities. Could it be win-win for everyone? Expanding markets for seafood harvesters while also increasing access to high quality food for consumers? And so the idea for Fishadelphia was born.
Talia used to be a high school teacher, and knew she wanted to engage young people in this project. So she and Tasha Palacio (our Assistant Director of Seafood Management and Youth Programming) worked with a group of high school students to launch the project, with expert help from George Mathis (our Seafood Wrangler). We sold our first fish in 2018, with 25 members and one pickup location. Since then we’ve expanded to more than 250 members and 15 pickup locations.
2016: the idea of Fishadelphia begins
Talia (our founder and executive director) dreams up the idea of a seafood program that connects local seafood harvesters with culturally and economically diverse seafood eaters. (Photo credit: E Robertson, Philadelphia Inquirer)
2017: work with students to design a pilot program
We work with students at Mastery Charter Thomas to conduct focus groups, build a web site, and design a pilot program. (Photo credit: T Palacio)
January 2018: pilot program launches
We launch our pilot program and sell our first fish, with 25 customers and one pickup location in South Philly! (Photo credit: K Paynter, WHYY)
May 2018: First dock trip
We run our first dock trip to the Point Pleasant Fishermen’s Co-op. (Photo credit: M Lee)
Jan 2019: we expand to a second location
We open a second location at Simon Gratz Mastery Charter High School in North Philly. (Photo credit: T Palacio)
June 2020: expanding to even more locations
We expand to 15 self-service pickup locations around the city.
Our take on sustainability
We want to support harvest of seafood that will allow us to continue to harvest into the future. Toward this goal, we buy and sell species that are “federally managed,” i.e., studied and managed by the National Marine Fisheries Service.
We want to support our seafood harvesting and eating communities, and we want to build an institution that will continue to make a difference into the future.
We aren’t trying to get rich — we just want to make enough to continue to support and compensate our seafood harvesters, staff, students, and community members equitably.