Islands’ Tourism Champion Branching Out With New Business

island fish bryherThe demand for local produce from visitors and islanders has encouraged a key Islands’ Partnership team member to leave her tourism job for a future in the family fish business.

Amanda Pender has helped develop tourism at the Islands’ Partnership since its inception.

She says she’s got an understanding of what visitors are looking for and wanted to run her own business for a while.

Now, with Bryher-based ‘Island Fish,’ Amanda intends to build on her family’s reputation for quality seafood.

She says the Jenkins and Pender families have a long history on the island, and while there have been some great characters, “now is the time to leave their mark.”

From Radio Scilly

Amanda Pender talks to Radio Scilly about her new business, ‘Island Fish.’

Amanda says fishing is ingrained in her family. Her father has supplied shellfish for many years and she remembers going door-to-door on Bryher as a girl selling lobster and crab.

She and her husband Andrew also fished out of Helford for a time.

Amanda says the IP was a great place to work but the time seemed right to try and add to the developing local food offer.

She’s started selling lobster and potted and dressed crab from a display fridge in her porch on Bryher.

She says the demand for wet fish is huge, but the tides and the risk of getting a net full of weed makes it more challenging than shellfish here.

Her first Tuesday afternoon fish stall on Tresco saw wet fish supplies quickly exhausted.

Amanda says she’s carefully considering how she expands and will aim to fulfil St Mary’s orders.

And she’s determined to extend the season, operating until Christmas. Winter trading will depend on demand, she says.

With her Local Action Group and marketing experience, Amanda says she intends to build the business over time and exporting seafood from Scilly could be part of future plans.

She says she wants to offer a quality product that will “sell Scilly” and adds that we all have a responsibility to do our bit with that.