Choosing species lower on the food chain directly supports seafood sustainability.
Wild Planet: Plenty of Fish in the Sea But Species Matters
(UNITED STATES, 7/16/2020)
The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) recently reported: "More needs to be done to ensure fisheries around the world are sustainable." According to Wild Planet, the first large-scale sustainably focused seafood company in the country, consumers can support sustainable fisheries around the world simply by choosing fish lower on the food chain—which the oceans naturally provide in abundance. From the bottom up, increasing consumer demand for less popular species can affect positive change for our oceans and, in turn, our planet.
A typical grocery store's canned seafood shelf contains roughly 70% tuna, which reflects our preference for eating higher on the food chain. In contrast, data from the FAO reveals that only 20% of what the oceans provide is tuna. The remaining 80% is comprised of other species, many of which are lower on the food chain. These species include forage fish that are some of the most abundant and nutrient-rich protein sources available to us.
In addition to sardines and skipjack tuna, Wild Planet offers a wide array of wild seafood choices to further encourage eating lower on the food chain including mackerel, yellowtail and anchovies.
Unfortunately, aquaculture (fish farming) demands that tons of forage fish like sardines and anchovies be turned into fish meal to feed large farmed fish. For example, it can take up to five pounds of wild caught forage fish to produce one pound of farmed salmon. Wild Planet promotes eating these small and abundant forage fish directly, which helps maintain a balanced marine ecosystem, offers numerous nutritional benefits, decreases the carbon footprint associated with the production of fish meal, and supports local fishermen.
It's encouraging that these sustainable and delicious fish are getting some positive attention recently. Sardines have made headlines as food writers and chefs rediscover them as a versatile pantry staple. And our choices at the grocery store can help fuel this trend further to benefit not only the health of our environment, but our own health as well: sardines are nutritional powerhouses loaded with essential nutrients including Omega 3, protein, calcium, iron and potassium.
Wild Planet promotes eating small and abundant forage fish, which helps maintain a balanced marine ecosystem, offers numerous nutritional benefits, decreases the carbon footprint associated with the production of fish meal, and supports local fishermen. Sardines are an easy addition to salads, sandwiches, flatbreads, pasta dishes, and so much more!
For people who continue to consume popular species like tuna, Wild Planet suggests enjoying a diverse variety of tuna species, so that our choices are more harmonious with what the ocean naturally provides. Wild skipjack tuna is plentiful, so incorporating it into our diets can alleviate the high demand on more popular species and support the delicate balance of our oceans. Wild Planet's Skipjack Wild Tuna is 100% sustainably pole and line caught and interchangeable with albacore in tuna recipes.
"The oceans have more than enough wild fish for everyone to enjoy, as long as we select the species of fish that our oceans can generously supply and they are sourced selectively," says Bill Carvalho, president and founder of Wild Planet. "It is our mission to encourage consumers to try lesser-known species that are just as delicious and convenient. This simple shift can go a long way in helping preserve and maximize the wild abundance of the oceans for generations to come."
In addition to sardines and skipjack tuna, Wild Planet offers a wide array of wild seafood choices to further encourage eating lower on the food chain including mackerel, yellowtail and anchovies. This supports the company's philosophy of showing respect for the planet by taking only what it can give and wasting nothing taken.
About Wild Planet
Seafood industry veteran Bill Carvalho founded Wild Planet Foods in 2004 to realize his vision of a superior line of seafood products sourced according to the highest environmental standards while providing excellent flavor and unsurpassed nutrition.
Based in McKinleyville, California and 100% U.S. owned, Wild Planet is the first large-scale sustainably focused seafood company in the country. As an industry pioneer, the company supports selective harvest through the use of sustainable fishing methods, which helps preserve and protect the delicate marine ecosystem. Wild Planet has been repeatedly recognized for its procurement policies and practices by Greenpeace and provides guidance for corporate environmental standards at some of the nation's most influential grocers. The company proudly supports the livelihood of coastal communities around the globe by partnering with small-scale fishermen and canneries with unparalleled seafood expertise.
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