The loud whir of stationary bike wheels and the excited clamour of student and chef competitors pushing pedal to the metal brought human-powered energy to the Vancouver Aquarium’s Ocean Courtyard today, as four Ocean Wise™ chefs teamed up with student coaches to power blenders full of healthy fruit and vegetables in support of Ned Bell’s Chefs for Oceans initiative.

Executive Chef Robert Clark, co-owner of The Fish Counter, Executive Chef Tim Bedford of the Vancouver Aquarium, and Executive Chef Quang Dang of West Restaurant joined Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver Executive Chef Ned Bell, founder of the Chefs for Oceans movement, and a group of children that included Bell’s nearly five-year-old son, Max. These enthusiastic teams chose ingredients that they thought would make great smoothies, and then used pedal power to animate the blenders. Their drinks were judged by an esteemed panel of judges.

The participants mustered their blood, sweat and tears to celebrate the upcoming cross-Canada bike ride of Ocean Wise Chef Ambassador Bell, who will bring attention to the dangers of overfishing, the need for action to help conserve the world’s oceans, and the ways in which Canadians can help.

The Executive Chef of Four Seasons Hotel Vancouver and YEW seafood + bar starts his bike ride on Canada Day, July 1, in St. John’s, Newfoundland. He and his nearly 16-year-old son, Fin, will pedal 140-200 kilometres per day, spreading the word about the cause in major city centres. Chef Bell expects to take 10 weeks to return to Vancouver, riding back into town on September 12.

Chef Bell’s passion for sustainable seafood comes from being a father of two, deeply concerned about conserving the world’s resources for his children and for future generations. “As a chef and a consumer, I prize delicious fish and seafood but want to ensure that they’re harvested sustainably. This road trip is my effort to share these concerns across Canada and, I hope, start a nation-wide movement,” says Bell.

The man of the hour - Ned Bell is preparing for his cross-country bike trek in support of sustainable oceans.

The man of the hour – Ned Bell is preparing for his cross-country bike trek in support of sustainable oceans.

Bell, who is seeking support from sponsors and the public to fund this grassroots journey, will donate partial proceeds from the ride to the Aquarium’s Ocean Wise program, SeaChoice and the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS). His main goal, however, is to encourage Canadians to become passionate about sustainable seafood and thereby encourage fishers and suppliers to choose only sustainable practices and species. Groups or individuals who are keen to support this important cause are invited to do so on the “donate tab” at www.chefsforoceans.com.

Chefs for Oceans is a movement founded by Chef Ned Bell with the focus of changing the future of sustainable seafood by building awareness and action through Bell’s cross-country bike journey. The goal is to create ready access to sustainable seafood for every Canadian within the next 10 years by standardizing environmentally responsible methods for future generations. Also at the forefront of Chef Bell’s journey is the goal to institute National Sustainable Seafood Day, a day that spotlights the necessity of healthy oceans, lakes and rivers for the futures of both human beings and the environment. Chef Bell is dedicated to inspiring Canadians to become part of the solution for healthier oceans for today’s children and generations to come.

Overfishing is the biggest threat facing our oceans today. The Ocean Wise symbol next to a seafood item is the Vancouver Aquarium’s assurance of an ocean-friendly seafood choice. Ocean Wise makes it easy for consumers to make sustainable seafood choices that ensure the health of our oceans for generations to come.      

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