Aquaculture Marketing Webinar Series, What Buyer’s Want: Exploring Market Channels, on April 20 at 11:30 am EST (10:30 am CST). 

April 13, 2021

Please join Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant for the next webinar in our Aquaculture Marketing Webinar Series, What Buyer’s Want: Exploring Market Channels, on April 20 at 11:30 am EST (10:30 am CST). 


Registration link:’arket_channels

Panel Discussion Topic- Exploring Market Channels

Title- What Buyer’s Want 


Stacy Shultz, Fortune Fish & Gourmet

Chef Jeff, Fox Valley Tech

Paul Hitchens, Southern Illinois University in Carbondale

Webinar Description:

Are you as a producer looking to get your foot in the door of a restaurant? Are you interested in selling fish to a distributor or live hauler? Are you wanting to break into a processed market?

We learned from Dr. Quagrainie’s talk, “So You Want to Sell Fish? Here is the Checklist,” that building relationships are a very important part of developing your market and marketing plan.

Now it is time for us to circle back to this important point. 

Join guest speakers Stacy Shultz, Chef Jeff, and Paul Hitchens on April 20 at 11:30 am Eastern Standard time for “What Buyers Want,” a live panel discussion, to hear what processors, distributors, chefs, brokers, and live haulers are looking for when buying fish and shellfish from farmers. 

Questions can be submitted in advance, or during the live virtual event, to Amy Shambach.

Panelist Bios:

Stacy Schultz, director of marketing and seafood sustainability coordinator for Fortune Fish & Gourmet, utilizes her expertise of responsible aquaculture to educate the Fortune Fish team and the staff of the restaurants the company serves. Schultz also orchestrates many of the company’s philanthropic efforts and appearances at tradeshows and conventions. By furthering the Fortune Fish & Gourmet brand and promoting sustainability through marketing, as well as collaborating with and supporting aquaculture-related NGOs and local aquariums, Schultz keeps Fortune Fish & Gourmet at the forefront of the industry. 

She attended Michigan State University in East Lansing, earning her degree in Zoology with a concentration in Marine Biology. Enamored with the school’s aquaculture program, Schultz took on two internships while in school. First, Schultz took a position with South Carolina’s Department of Natural Resources, maintaining and researching shrimp production. The second internship took her to Walt Disney World’s Living with the Land Pavilion, where she operated a freshwater aquaculture showcase, maintained, and harvested fish for the onsite restaurant. 

After graduation, Schultz joined Chicago’s John G. Shedd Aquarium, as a veterinary healthcare technologist, taking care of animals ranging from frogs to dolphins. Schultz also worked part time at Shaw’s Crab House, another Windy City landmark, exploring the city’s seafood industry. In 2004, Schultz took the title of veterinary research specialist at University of Illinois’s Urbana-Champaign campus to run the molecular diagnostic lab. 

After almost seven years in the lab, Schultz craved a new opportunity in her beloved field of aquaculture. It was then, in 2011, Schultz reconnected with Fortune Fish & Gourmet’s Mark Palicki, her former supervisor at Shaw’s Crabhouse. With her impressive biology and aquaculture background, Schultz came on board as Fortune’s marketing manager and seafood sustainability coordinator and has since been promoted to director of marketing.  She is also the board chair of Sea Pact, a group of leading North American Seafood Companies dedicated to driving stewardship and continuous improvement of social, economic, and environmental responsibility throughout the global seafood supply chain.  Fortune is a founding member of Sea Pact.

Schultz resides in downtown Chicago, allowing her to explore the city’s diverse culinary scene. In her downtime, Schultz enjoys cooking, swimming, and visiting her family in Michigan.

Chef Jeff is the Program Director of the Culinary Arts & Hospitality Department at Fox Valley Technical College in Appleton, Wisconsin.  He focuses on outreach for the Culinary Arts, Hospitality Management, Foodservice Production, Advanced Baking and Kitchen Steward programs.  He has taught classes and developed curriculum for many classes including Food, Beverage & Labor Cost Controls; Introduction to Hospitality; Meat Identification; and Grilling, Smoking & BBQ.  “Chef Jeff” has spent his entire career in the restaurant and hospitality industry, serving in many capacities including:  Senior Director of the Wisconsin Restaurant Association Education Foundation, Lecturer at the University of Wisconsin - Stout, Instructor at Madison Area Technical College, Catering Director for the University of Wisconsin and a Professional Chef for more than 36 years.

Chef Jeff obtained his Doctorate of Barbecue Philosophy (Ph.B.) from the Kansas City Barbecue Society, one of only 33 ever awarded.  He holds three degrees from the University of Wisconsin - Stout including a Master of Science in Vocational Education with emphasis in Hospitality Administration and Bachelor of Science Degrees in Hotel & Restaurant Management and Vocational, Technical and Adult Education.  He holds an Associates Degree in Restaurant & Hotel Cookery from Moraine Park Technical College and a Technical Diploma in Dietary Management from Northeast Wisconsin Technical College.  He has been certified by the American Culinary Federation (ACF) as a Certified Executive Chef (CEC), a Certified Culinary Educator (CCE), a Certified Culinary Administrator (CCA) and a Master BBQ Cook (MBBQ).  He also holds certifications from the National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation as a Foodservice Management Professional (FMP), from the International Food Service Executives Association (IFSEA) as a Certified Food Executive (CFE), from the Kansas City Barbecue Society (KCBS) as a Certified Barbecue Judge (CBJ), and from the Dietary Managers Association as a Certified Dietary Manager (CDM) and a Certified Food Protection Professional (CFPP).  

In 2017, Chef Jeff was honored as the first John Bertoldi “BBQ Person of the Year” for the State of Wisconsin.  In 2012 he was recognized as a “Terrific Teacher” by a local television station.  In both 2008 and 2011 he was named the Outstanding Academic Advisor of the Year at Fox Valley Technical College (FVTC).  In 2006, he was inducted into the American Academy of Chefs (AAC), the honor society of the American Culinary Federation (ACF).  In 2005 he was presented with the Salute to Excellence Award by the Wisconsin Restaurant Association’s Education Foundation and was also selected as the American Culinary Federation – Fox Valley Culinary Association (FVCA) Chef of the Year.  In 2003 he was named the Outstanding Restaurateur of the Year by the Big Four Chapter of the Wisconsin Restaurant Association (WRA), received the Vocational Administrator Award from the Fox Valley Association for Career and Technical Education, a Courtesy Award from the Appleton Rotary Club and recognized by a local television station as being a “Hometown Hero.”  In 1999 he was named the Outstanding Industry Partner by the Wisconsin Pork Producers.  In 1997 he was named the Distinguished Alumnus of the Year by Moraine Park Technical College and was also given an Honorary Award by the Wisconsin Family & Consumer Educators.  

He serves as president and organizer of the Fox Valley BBQ Forum, is a past president and currently serves as the treasurer on the board of directors of the American Culinary Federation – Fox Valley Culinary Association (chefs), is a past president and currently serves as secretary on the board of directors of the Wisconsin Restaurant Association – Big Four Chapter (restaurateurs) and serves as a director emeritus on the Wisconsin Restaurant Association Education Foundation state board.

He is married to his lovely wife of 31 years Paula Kay and is the proud father of their two grown children, daughter Cassandra and son Jake.

Paul Hitchens is an Aquaculture specialist with more than 39 years of aquaculture experience, 21 of these internationally as Technical Manager for commercial marine shrimp production in both extensive and intensive production systems. Paul has both farm and hatchery management experience culturing marine shrimp, as well as farming other species including Tilapia, Clams, Oysters, Redfish, Largemouth Bass, Hybrid Striped Bass, and Freshwater Prawn. He has been the Aquaculture Specialist at the Center for Fisheries, Aquaculture and Aquatic Sciences in Southern Illinois University Carbondale since 2005, focusing primarily on production of Largemouth Bass in ponds and cage culture of Hybrid Striped Bass in surface coal mine lakes. He provides overall technical service support and marketing assistance to the Illinois aquaculture producers for sales to the United States and Canadian live fish markets. Paul is fluent in both English and Spanish. You can contact him at or his office phone at 618-453-5590.


North Central Regional Aquaculture Center (NCRAC), Illinois-Indiana Sea Grant, Purdue University Department of Forestry and Natural Resources, & Illinois Extension

Aquaculture Marketing Webinar Series 

So You Want to Sell Your Fish? Here is the Checklist (No. 1)

Presented by Dr. Kwamena Quagrainie

Taking Seafood Social- Sharing your story & making connections through online platforms(No. 2)

Presented by Lisa Tossey


Changes in Seafood- Emerging Opportunities (No. 3)

Presented by Dr. Simone Valle de Souza


Transparency From Farm To Market (No. 4)

Presented by Angie Snyder and Jeff Waite

March 24, 2011 at 11:00 am EST


What Buyers Want- A Panel Discussion (No. 5)

Presented by Stacy Shultz, Chef Jeff, and Paul Hitchens

April 20, 2011 at 11:30 EST (10:30 CST)


For question contact 

Amy Shambach