In celebration of artisan fish smoker Sally Barnes’ visit to NYC, Bog & Thunder presents an international conversation about the challenges facing wild salmon populations worldwide and the efforts to save them. Join Bog & Thunder to welcome salmon warriors from Alaska to Ireland to discuss the impact that the climate crisis, overfishing, and salmon farms have on wild fish populations, and what we can do to save what we love.
Featuring: Sally Barnes (Woodcock Smokery, Ireland); Melanie Brown (SalmonState, Alaska); Mark Titus (August Island Pictures, Save What You Love, Eva’s Wild); and Colles Stowell (One Fish Foundation, Slow Fish). Moderated by Adam Sachs.
About the panelists:
Sally Barnes: Sally Ferns-Barnes began traditional smoke-curing as a means to preserve the bounty that she and husband at the time were catching from the Atlantic waters of the West Cork coastline. Working as a fisherwoman and commercial fisherman’s wife, she smoked her first fish in 1979 and through endless trial and error, supplying the local community with preserved fish, established a famously unique recipe that began winning awards and accolades, including the prestigious Supreme Champion at the Great Taste awards for her now legendary cold-smoked Wild Atlantic Salmon, and most recently the Eurotoques Craft award. Sally was honored to receive a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Irish Food Writers’ Guild in 2022.
Working only and always with wild fish, Sally has remained a stalwart of small-scale independent business with a predominantly local client base, and dealing with genuinely sustainable quantities of real fish from local boats when the weather is good and the fish are in season.
With a firm and unfaltering stance against environmentally unsound aquaculture, Sally has won the respect of retailers and top chefs around the world, speaking regularly at Slow Food events in defense of natural produce and now supplying some of the Michelin starred restaurants around Ireland with her deep knowledge of true, natural fish from West Cork waters.
Melanie Brown: Melanie Brown lives a wild salmon life in Alaska and fishes the Naknek River district in Bristol Bay with her children. She does what she can to protect salmon habitat and influence what happens to salmon in the ocean space with her colleagues at SalmonState. Feasting on wild foods with people is her favorite.
Mark Titus: In 2006, Mark Titus founded August Island Pictures in Seattle and learned the craft of storytelling by writing and directing brand films for clients like: The Nature Conservancy, T-Mobile and the United Nations Development Programme. As a filmmaker, Mark Titus has directed and produced short films since 2003. In 2014 Mr. Titus helmed The Breach – an award-winning feature documentary about wild salmon.
In 2020, Mark launched impact brand, Eva’s Wild concurrent to the release of his second award-winning feature documentary, The Wild – which examines the fate of Bristol Bay, Alaska through the lens of addiction and recovery, asking if it’s possible to save the things we love. In early 2021, Mark launched his podcast, Save What You Love, interviewing exceptional people devoting their lives in ways big and small to the protection of things they love. Later that year, Titus earned a producer role on TV show, NCIS – working with actor, Mark Harmon to bring a dramatic depiction of the struggle to protect Bristol Bay, Alaska to network television – garnering 23 million viewers. In October, 2021, Mark received the Daniel Housberg Wilderness Image Award for excellence in Film from the Alaska Conservation Foundation.
In early 2022, Mr. Titus began filming The Turn, which will be the third and final film in The Breach Trilogy. The Turn is scheduled to premiere in 2024. Mark has spoken at educational institutions like Cornell, Yale and the University of Oregon and on the TEDx stage in 2018. Through his storytelling, Mark Titus carries the message that humanity has an inherent need for wilderness and to fulfill that need we have a calling to protect wild places and wild things. You can find all of Mark’s current work here.
Colles Stowell: A seafood-loving New Orleans native, Colles launched the non-profit One Fish Foundation in 2015 to bring the sustainable seafood message into classrooms (from elementary to graduate school) and communities. The foundation’s mission: encourage people of all ages to care about where their seafood comes from, how it was harvested or grown, and the benefits of supporting community-based fisheries.
Colles is also the Slow Fish North America network coordinator and a member of the Oversight Team. As network coordinator, he helps direct the network’s strategic planning efforts, long-term growth and advocacy, gatherings, webinars, and messaging. He co-manages the Rising Tide program, which brings seafood with values discussions to Slow Food communities across the country. He also serves on the Slow Food USA Farm and Food Policy Team, the Sustainable Fisheries Foundation board of directors, and is a Chef Connector for Don’t Cage Our Oceans. He lives and works on the ancestral lands of the Wabanaki people in Yarmouth, Maine.
About Bog & Thunder:
Bog & Thunder is an eco-culinary tourism company focused on Irish food, culture and sustainability.