Home delivered fish service going off the hook
Door to door fish deliveries are taking off in Taranaki like never before.
"It started as a part time business, three days a week. But now I'm so busy I can't go hunting," said George Cameron, owner of G & J Fish Supplies Ltd in New Plymouth.
Cameron said he believed the internet had a lot to do with the resurgence of fresh fish because people could order online and have him deliver it fresh to their door.
Taranaki's most popular selling fish was gurnard, he said.
"I sell twice as much gurnard than anything else."
But he has turned people onto other fish such as tarakihi, john dory, sea perch and turbot.
Snapper, which used to be the most popular selling fish, was also in abundant supply, contrary to what many people are told.
"There's so much snapper on the North Islands west coast."
"We have the best fisheries in the world in New Zealand," he said.
Another popular choice was oysters. He has sold close to 270 dozen oysters this season.
"Sometimes the suppliers can only fit 11 in the tub because the oysters are so big,"
His personal favourite was a difficult decision for him to make but eventually settled on blue fin tuna.
"New Zealand is just really blessed with good fish choices," he said.
He believed the best way to cook fish was to keep things simple, dusted with seasoned flour and a touch of turmeric, pan fried in butter with a squeeze of lemon juice at the end.
Cameron said the delivery service was one he loved to provide.
"Everyone should have a chance to eat fresh fish," he said. "We won't sell anything that we wouldn't eat ourselves."
Cameron has been running the business for nine years after he bought if from the previous owner who ran it for 28 years.
Before turning to selling fish Cameron spent 26 years working on commercial fishing boats in New Zealand and has three sons who are currently working as fisherman.
"I had a couple of injuries on fishing boats and was looking for a bit of a change,"
While he tries to source Taranaki caught fish he has found the weather "stuffs things up a bit" so he mainly sources it from Gisborne or other places around the North Island.
He processess all the fish himself in his small factory setup in New Plymouth, a process that can take to four or five hours each day.