www.israel.org Where can you find Nemo? In Israel’s Arava desert, where aquaculture is blooming despite a dearth of fresh water. Israel’s Arava desert gets just 30 millimeters of rainfall a year, but it produces 60 percent of Israel’s fresh vegetable exports, 10% of cut flower exports … and now it has a thriving ornamental fish industry, too. “The desert is dry and all the water that we have here first of all is water that we drill here in the Arava; we’re not connected to a national water system,” explains Alon Gadiel, director Arava Research and Development Center. Yet Israel is in the top six exporting countries for aquarium fish, and there are now 18 fish farms in the Arava. Three of them breed the clownfish better known as Nemos because of the hit movie “Finding Nemo.” “A business like aquaculture is a very good business because you don’t need a lot of land, and you don’t need a lot of water. You need a lot of knowledge,” says Gadiel. In addition, he stresses, “We breed fish that originally grow in the sea, and we sell them from captivity so we prevent harming the ecosystem.” Visit the MFA’s Social Media Channels Facebook - www.facebook.com www.facebook.com Twitter - www.twitter.com www.twitter.com Find us on Instagram: @IsraelMFA & @StateOfIsrael
This summer, while interning at Hazon, I have been working on a supplement to the Hazon Food Guide on kosher, sustainable fish. Prior to this project, my experience with fish had largely been enjoying the delicious lox and bagels at Kiddush without considering where that fish came from. Sure, I knew to look for cans of tuna that said “dolphin friendly” but I certainly did not invest nearly as much time thinking about the origin of my fish as I did thinking about whether my kosher chicken or beef was organic and locally raised. After all, our sages deemed fish parve, right?