Whole Foods Market will stop selling red-rated seafood. (Photo: Whole Foods)
Whole Foods pulls red-rated fish from its shelves
(UNITED STATES, 4/2/2012)
Whole Foods Market will no longer carry red-rated wild-caught fish in its seafood departments beginning this Earth Day 22 April. The move comes one year ahead of the company’s internal deadline of Earth Day 2013 and makes Whole Foods the first US grocer to stop selling red-rated seafood.
Whole Foods will stop selling Atlantic halibut, grey sole, skate and other species and will instead stock sustainably caught alternatives.
A red rating indicates that a seafood species is being overfished or that current fishing methods harm other marine life or habitats. The ratings are determined by nonprofit research groups Blue Ocean Institute and Monterey Bay Aquarium.
Since 2010, Whole Foods Market has worked with both organizations to display their colour-coded sustainability ratings to help shoppers make informed choices when buying wild-caught seafood.
“We are now able to offer more sustainable seafood choices than ever before, and we are thrilled that our suppliers have worked with us so swiftly to find high-quality green- and yellow-rated seafood so we could not only meet, but beat our deadline. This shift allows us to promote and highlight fisheries that use responsible fishing methods and source from areas where fish are most abundant and fisheries are well-managed,” said David Pilat, Whole Foods Market’s global seafood buyer.
Further, Whole Foods still offers one of the broadest selections of Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fish such as Alaska salmon, Pacific halibut, Nova Scotia harpoon-caught swordfish and Pacific cod.
For wild fish not certified by the MSC, Blue Ocean Institute and Monterey Bay Aquarium’s green or “Best Choice” ratings mean the species are abundant and are caught in environmentally friendly ways and yellow or “Good Alternative” indicates some concerns exist with the species’ status or fishing methods.
| Green-rated black cod. (Photo: Whole Foods)
Alternatives to red-rated seafood include MSC-certified Pacific halibut and yellow-rated Dover sole and Atlantic flounder.
Whole Foods Market will host its first-ever “Fishmonger Face-Off,” in which North American team members will compete for the title of the company’s top fishmonger. On 16 June, the company’s 11 best fishmongers will travel to the Aspen Food & Wine Classic to show off their skills in a series of challenges that will test their abilities and knowledge of sustainable seafood.
- Whole Foods Market to stop selling red-rated swordfish and tuna
By Natalia Real
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