A Novel and Tasty Idea for North Bull Sea Buckthorn Problem

22 Nov 2013

Chef Liam Moloughney and Pat Corrigan of North Bull biosphere reserve, harvest sea-buckthorn fruit. Photograph: Dublin City Council staff.

The Irish Times recently published a very interesting article on a possible solution for the problem of Sea Buckthorn berries on North Bull Island, in Dublin Bay.

Dublin City Council has an innovative solution: you may be able eat them. They may also give new flavours to local restaurants, so providing a profitable link between business and biodiversity.

The seeds of this solution began to grow when two council staff observed birds feeding voraciously on sea buckthorn’s orange berries on North Bull Island, in Dublin Bay, and apparently getting happily tipsy in the process. If birds liked them so much, perhaps we humans might enjoy them also.

And then they observed something else: humans were indeed sometimes picking them there. The pickers were mainly “new Irish” immigrants, whose traditions often tie them more closely to foraging for wild food than ours do.

So Pat Corrigan, supervisor of the North Bull biosphere reserve – a Unesco designation – and Mick Harford, district parks officer, began to wonder if longer-established Irish people might also be encouraged to appreciate sea-buckthorn berries. 

Read the full story on the Irish Times