Those who are at sea

"Mast'Errico says that fishermen don't know how to swim, that it's good for the summer people who go out in the middle of the waves to have fun and who deliberately put themselves in the sun. The sun is pleasant for the person who catches it lying down, immobile. For those who carry it on their backs, the sun is like a sack of coal. »
Erri De Luca. Montedidio.

You have to imagine the biting cold of a winter morning, even here in the Mediterranean, when the wind is icy and on board a tiny fishing boat where everything is damp, the metal is icy and the sun hasn't yet come out, a mattress is stuck in a bonnet to protect you from the sea spray.
You have to imagine these men and women who every morning set out to sea before daybreak, armed only with a few fishing rods, as impressive as they are, facing the immensity of the sea.
Sometimes you even have to dive, in the middle of winter, in search of the sea urchins, so prized at the beginning of the year. And spend long hours, often alone, hoping that the line finally dives into the dark waters. The fishermen of the SaThoAn cooperative (such as Sardines, Tuna, Anchovies) mainly cover the Mediterranean coastline and fish in an artisanal way, mainly with fishing rods and respecting numerous quotas to defend sustainable and responsible fishing. They are hard workers who work in often difficult conditions.
You have to imagine how long it is, a day hanging on to a duck, without knowing if a fish will bite, and what you will be able to sell when you get back to port.

Then you have to imagine a huge trawler passing in the distance, in a break of waves and swells, dragging the sea bed with a net. Bringing up tons of fish, of all kinds and in all places. In silence.

One day, I saw in a fish stall of a supermarket in Marseille red mullet, these small pink fish, symbol if there is any symbol of the Mediterranean fauna, the culture of Marseille and the recipe of the bouillabaisse. North Atlantic origin.

Faced with such a competitive market, faced with monsters of the seas and such violent and destructive practices, faced with cheap food habits, the fishermen of SaThoAn struggle to defend their profession, and seem quite alone. While we eat an average of 20 kg of fish per year, which represents more than 100 million tons of fish caught in the world each year, and 40 million tons of so-called "by-catches" Vincent, Renaud, Jean-Paul, Olivier, Rémi and the others show us a way, and remind us that we are all responsible for our consumption.