Want Organic Caviar? Head to Canada’s British Columbia Coast


British Columbia’s Sunshine Coast, located two hours from Vancouver Canada by road or ferry, is home to a rich sustainability culture. While you’ll find myriad farm stands, local art galleries, farm-to-table restaurants and eco-friendly hotels, one truly interesting green experience is touring Target Marine Hatchery, their organic and self-sustaining sturgeon farm.

Caviar is not typically thought of as a moral food choice, especially as much of the sturgeon population from the Caspian Sea has been depleted; however, Target Marine has created a self-sustaining operation that doesn’t require fishing. From their first batch of white sturgeon from the nearby Fraser River, which were purchased from local farmers and the Vancouver Aquarium, they’ve been able to create a continuous cycle or reproduction from the spawn of the original batch.

Target Marine Hatchery

While many caviar producers are using endangered fish to produce their product (many are even lying about it), Target Marine creates an ethical food source. Sturgeon are treated humanely, fed organic food and never given hormones or antibiotics to promote growth. The caviar itself is also organic, and is made with only salt and roe. Additionally, the product is Certified Ocean Wise, a certification handed out by the Vancouver Aquarium for sustainable, environmentally-friendly seafood. Above: Target Marine Hatchery sturgeon tanks.

Northern Divine Caviar

Interestingly, Target Marine Hatchery is the only caviar producer in British Columbia. After enjoying a free tour of the hatchery, visitors can purchase a tin of caviar (starting at $88 for 30 grams) to be lead in a structured tasting. You’ll learn tips for how to properly taste caviar (Hint: Never use a metal spoon! Stick with mother of pearl spoons, tasteless foods like water crackers, palate cleaners like Champagne or vodka, or “naked” off your hand like salt with a tequila shot) and will get to experience the sensation of popping caviar with your tongue and letting the buttery, salty goodness take over your palate.

Jessica Festa
Jessica Festa is the editor of the travel sites Jessie on a Journey (http://jessieonajourney.com) and Epicure & Culture (http://epicureandculture.com). Along with blogging at We Blog The World, her byline has appeared in publications like Huffington Post, Gadling, Fodor's, Travel + Escape, Matador, Viator, The Culture-Ist and many others. After getting her BA/MA in Communication from the State University of New York at Albany, she realized she wasn't really to stop backpacking and made travel her full time job. Some of her most memorable experiences include studying abroad in Sydney, teaching English in Thailand, doing orphanage work in Ghana, hiking her way through South America and traveling solo through Europe. She has a passion for backpacking, adventure, hiking, wine and getting off the beaten path.
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