Louanne Mostert so well known to many in St Francis returned on a mission to profile the Chokka fishing industry and the livelihoods that depend on it. 

“In early March, I had the pleasure of visiting St Francis again. Though it was heart-breaking to see the shell of what was once my home, the penguin sanctuary at Seal Point lighthouse, I also a enjoyed a trip down memory lane: from the early penguin days to staging live music with Michael Kimmings at Rock Lily. The locals and the Cape St Francis Resort welcomed me with open arms – thank you!

Now representing the Marine Stewardship Council in Africa, I came to St Francis with the mission to profile the Chokka fishing industry and the livelihoods that depend on it. Working with the renowned nature film production agency, ReWild Africa, we spent three days in St Francis to interview, film and ‘walk in the shoes’ of the local Chokka fishermen.

We interviewed a number of local folk to help us portray the story of the St Francis Chokka:

  • Jimmy Roberts, local fisherman
  • Arthur Paulse, skipper
  • Johan Barnard, St Francis Port Master
  • Greg Christy, representing SASMIA
  • Clive Canter of Chokka Block, who did a squid talk and demo at his portside restaurant
  • Hantie van der Westhuizen of St Francis Tourism
  • And Esti and Eric Stewart of the Chokka Trail, who were instrumental to planning the filming project on the ground

We have produced a shorthand (blog) story and 3-minute film to profile this fishery and why St Francis is dubbed the Squid Capital.

But why? The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) is an international non-profit organisation. Our vision is for the world’s oceans to be teeming with life, and seafood supplies safeguarded for this and future generations. One of our projects, Fish for Good, engages with five South African fisheries (including squid) on their journey to optimised sustainability. Improving the management of South Africa’s fisheries can deliver sustained benefits throughout the seafood supply chain, benefiting coastal communities while rebuilding fish stocks. Read more in the attached press release.

The funder of the Fish for Good project is the Dutch Postcode Lottery. Thanking the Dutch for their support, a campaign is currently running in the Netherlands, drawing exposure to the fishery and the village.

Read the full story White gold: South Africa’s squid jiggers are fishing for the future” and watch the 3 minute film here: https://fish-for-good-squid-stories.msc.org/

Louanne Mostert
Communications Manager: Africa, Middle East and South Asia
Marine Stewardship Council