Jennifer Young, the owner of Food Safety Solutions and food safety specialist, has been based out of Hawaii for seven years, but will soon be joining the Gulf Seafood institute and moving back to Louisiana.

During her time in Hawaii, Young learned the seafood industry from the ground up. Starting her education at the auction, to cutting and trimming, grading, sales, marketing and finally graduating into food safety compliance and sustainability issues.

During her time in Hawaii, Young learned the seafood industry from the ground up that included regular visits to the United Fishing Agency LTD daily fish auction in Honolulu. Food Safety Solutions photo.“I gained great experience working with fisheries deeply involved with sustainable practices like the Fishery Improvement Projects (FIP) to address the Pelagic Longline Bigeye and Yellowfin Fisheries in the Federated States of Micronesia and Marshall Islands,” she said in a prepared statement.

The Louisiana native also worked closely with NGO’s such as the Sustainable Fisheries Partnership, Marine Steward Council and FishWise. She became proficient in researching and writing white papers on numerous seafood programs in Hawaii, the Marshall Islands and other U.S. Pacific Rim locations.

She has found seafood industries across the U.S. face similar issues from region to region and is determined to build upon the accomplishments of her Pacific Rim partners to translate them into the similar success stories in the Gulf.

“I was responsible for traveling the globe and setting up the Global Food Safety Initiative (GFSI) certification,” she explained. “I worked closely with teams in the Republic of Marshall Islands, the Philippines, Pohnpei, Guam and a host of other U.S. Pacific territories, as well as in the Pacific Northwest.”

She said she sees the Gulf Seafood Institute as a loud and clear voice advocating for Gulf seafood.

“I want to grow on the experience I gained working in the seafood industry in the Pacific Rim. My new mission is supporting the seafood industries of the Gulf, because it is my home and a very important part of me,” she said.

Young sees tremendous similarities to her work in the Pacific with seafood in the Gulf, especially with issues such as catch limits, illegal–unreported-unregulated (IUU) fishing, as well as electronic data collection. She said Hawaii has had a very effective electronic data collections system in place for a number of years, and is glad to see the Gulf is starting to put this in place for the charter-for-hire sector of the red snapper fishery.

Originally from a small town south of Alexandria, she attended the University of Southwest Louisiana, now the University of Louisiana at Lafayette, and received her Bachelor of Business Administration of the American Intercontinental University founded in Lucerne, Switzerland.

“The experience Young brings to the table will be an invaluable asset to the Gulf Seafood Institute,” said GSI’s executive director Margaret Henderson. “Her knowledge of international seafood issues, especially shrimp, will give our organization an even louder voice, both in the Gulf and on Capitol Hill. I look forward to working with her on upcoming legislation.”

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Samuel Hill is the former associate editor for National Fisherman. He is a graduate of the University of Southern Maine where he got his start in journalism at the campus’ newspaper, the Free Press. He has also written for the Bangor Daily News, the Outline, Motherboard and other publications about technology and culture.

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