THE LAST TRAP FAMILY follows Corey Forrest, a 3rd generation self-described fishermom, as she works with her family on the last trap fishing operation in Rhode Island. To join Corey and her father Alan aboard their ship is to peek into a bygone world powered not by technology but by traditions handed down from generations. As they work with gear maintained for decades, they fight to keep a family business afloat and maintain a way of life connected to and in partnership with the natural world.
I wanted to tell a story about the commercial fishing industry from the point of view of a family-run operation. There are fewer and fewer independent outfits today in an industry that’s becoming rapidly more corporate and consolidated. And while a host of global factors impact the fishing industry, I wanted to focus on the personal. THE LAST TRAP FAMILY follows Corey and her family working on the last trap fishing operation, a bygone practice powered not by new technologies but by traditions handed down over generations. As we witness the strenuous work they do at sea and on land, we also experience Corey’s deep connection to a way of life that she does not take for granted. It’s not just a job for her. I find personal inspiration in Corey’s story and in her family’s work, and I find myself reflecting on how their family-run operation fits within the global context of fisheries, a changing climate, and the seafood choices of American consumers. While the US controls more coastline than any other country, Americans largely pass up local seafood for cheaper imports. As working waterfronts shrink and disappear around the US, I ask myself what value do we place on the sources of food we consume, the jobs that we support, and the resources that we share. -Hudson Lines