Diverse values of surplus for a community economy of fish(eries)

Abstract: This paper develops a diverse economies account offish ‘waste’ that revalues it as ‘surplus’. We examine ‘Kai Ika’, a community marine conservation experiment in Tamaki Makaurau (Auckland), Aotearoa New Zealand. Kai Ika rescues fish heads, frames and offal that were previously ‘going to waste’ and redistributesthem tofish eaters who would otherwise struggle to access these foods. It involves fishers and community sector and Indigenous actors in an initiative that converts would-be waste into surplus. We examine the case as adiverse economic project that nourishes humans, enhances respect for fish as living beings, and potentially con-serves marine resources in the face of global-to-local fisheries depletion. The research is based on community-gathered fish parts collection data, and virtual and email interview data. We analyse this data to produce anaccount of diverse ‘object values’ and fish-related surpluses that derive from surplus labour and other socio-cultural and environmental surplus. We argue that reframing fish economies in this way encourages new anddiverse economic subjectivities and a more connected, relational and cooperative community economy of fish.

Authors: Emma L. Sharp, Ingrid Petersen, Georgia Mclellan, Alana Cavadino and Nicolas Lewis.