“Squid Fleet” Takes You Into the Opaque World of Chinese Fishing

In February, 2022, I invited the documentary filmmaker Ed Ou to join me at sea, boarding Chinese squid ships. For the past four years, I have been visiting these ships as part of an investigation into the use of forced labor by the global seafood industry. China has the world’s largest distant water fishing fleet, catching billions of pounds of seafood annually, the biggest portion of it squid. The fleet is rife with labor trafficking, abusive working conditions, and violence. But China publicly releases little information about its vessels, and most stay at sea for more than a year, making them difficult to track or inspect. To see the fleet up close, Ou and I travelled to fishing grounds near the Falkland Islands and the Galápagos. We chased boats, interviewed crews by radio, and, when permitted, boarded ships. My goal was to talk to crew members and chronicle their working conditions. “Squid Fleet,” the film that Ou produced, offers something deeper. Ou and his co-director, Will N. Miller, made a hybrid documentary, combining fictionalized narration with real footage from the trip to capture a strange world that few outsiders get to see. 13:45 Video trailer, >>click to read<< 21:36

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