An Illinois grocer plans to supply Asian carp to Illinois
(The Center Square) – An East Peoria company is dedicated to reducing the threat of invasive Asian carp in the Illinois River and offering a healthy meal.
Asian carp were imported from Arkansas by fish farmers in the 1970s to control plankton in rearing ponds. However, during the floods, the carp escaped captivity and began to reproduce in the wild, with large populations developing in the early 1980s. They eventually moved north to Illinois. Now fishermen say there are hundreds of millions of pounds of Asian carp harming the Illinois River ecosystem.
Roy Sorce, owner of Sorce Enterprises, has partnered with the Midwest Fishing Co-op to cut the number of fish and put another protein on the table.
“We’re talking about £ 15 to 20 million a year and that would help reduce the numbers and also reduce the risk of them getting to the Great Lakes,” said Sorce.
Sorce recently received approval to quickly freeze harvested fish from the river for transport to processing plants. The chopped, still-frozen fish is then returned to his company for storage and later sale.
The idea of serving Asian carp from the Illinois River at the dining table isn’t new, but previous efforts to persuade people to participate have not gained widespread appeal. The carp is a familiar staple food in many countries.
Sorce said Asian carp are low in pollutants and one of the healthiest fish there is.
“It’s very tasty. It doesn’t have a fishy taste. If you eat salmon or tuna, you taste that. You only taste what you put in there,” said Sorce.