New York-based Acme Smoked Fish Corp. is launching a new non-profit arm, the Acme Smoked Fish Foundation, to support climate change innovation and educational initiatives in the seafood industry.

Acme established the foundation with an initial contribution of $250,000 (€221,530).

The foundation is currently raising funds for its Eric Caslow Climate Change Innovation Fund, in honor of the late Eric Caslow, co-chairman of Acme and a leader at the company for more than 50 years. Caslow died in February at the age of 75.

The Eric Caslow Climate Change Innovation Fund will distribute awards to innovators in the seafood industry who are addressing climate change through carbon reduction.

The application and award process for grantees will be announced in early 2022.

Through the award, the foundation hopes to raise awareness, draw attention to key innovations and accelerate necessary changes to mitigate the devastating impacts of climate change, Acme said.

Acme said it seeks a diversity of ideas and people contributing to solutions critical to the future of the industry, so the fund will prioritize the contributions of women and minorities, groups that are highly underrepresented in the industry.

The foundation is also working to develop a comprehensive approach to support educational initiatives in the communities where the company operates.

Several team members at Acme are working to develop this program, with plans to launch The Acme Education Fund in 2022.

“We are thrilled to be in a position to support industry innovation and education, and we invite you to join in our efforts,” said Emily Caslow Gindi, customer service manager and a member of the family’s fourth generation.

“My uncle Eric dedicated his life to an industry he loved, and this is the most fitting way to continue his work.”

“We believe that the innovations that will matter most in our future are ones that address climate change, and work to improve our planet and our people,” said Rob Snyder, Acme’s new culture and sustainability officer. “These advances are critical and can emerge anywhere in the seafood value chain.”

The foundation is being led by a board of directors that includes: Eduardo Carbajosa, president; Emily Caslow Gindi; Buzz Bilik, chief sales officer; Rob Snyder; and Franco Adam, CEO of Acme Smoked Fish Chile.

Acme is the largest smoked seafood producer in the United States, and continues under the ownership of the Caslow family. Eric’s son, David, and nephew Adam -- the fourth generation of the family in the business -- have been co-CEOs of Acme for several years.