Patagonia goes from jackets to wild salmon jerky

The apparel company wants to show the food industry how to promote fishing sustainability

From jackets to jerky

Kevin Fleming/Corbis

Patagonia Inc., the California-based apparel company that was one of the first to switch to organically grown cotton, has embarked on a new quest: selling wild salmon jerky while promoting sustainable fishing practices. Working with Aboriginal communities along British Columbia’s Skeena River, Patagonia catches fish upstream from areas where salmon stocks have declined. The jerky is made locally in a processing facility. “I want to show the [food] industry that this is the way it should be done,” says company founder Yvon Chouinard in a promotional video warning of the dangers of fish farming and overconsumption. The jerky comes in three flavours (smoked pepper, smoked teriyaki and smoked chili pepper), but netting consumers—and changing the fishing industry—won’t be easy. A two-ounce packet costs US$12.50, and Patagonia will have to rely on its clothing distribution chain to sell the jerky.

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