Starting in October, McDonald's will offer its customers MSC certified fish in its
McDonald's to serve MSC-certified fish starting in October
Thursday, June 09, 2011, 03:00 (GMT + 9)
McDonald’s announced on World Ocean Day this 8 June that it will begin serving Marine Stewardship Council- (MSC) certified sustainable fish to more than 13 million customers across Europe starting in October.
“McDonald’s will be making MSC labelled fish available at an affordable price to millions of our customers across Europe,” said Steve Easterbrook, President of McDonald’s Europe.
|Steve Easterbrook, President of McDonald Europe. (Photo: McDonald)
“We chose the MSC certification as the most robust and recognisable independent accreditation of our own sustainable fisheries standard. This is an important milestone in our commitment to ensure future long-term supply,” he added.
McDonald’s will be the first company in its sector to introduce MSC-certified white fish throughout Europe. The company sold some 100 million Filet-o-Fish portions across Europe in 2010.
The chain said it will not increase prices on its fish products but will instead absorb any costs incurred, reports Bloomberg.
This is part of the chain’s ongoing work with suppliers to improve sustainable fishing practices through its global Sustainable Fisheries Policy.
“McDonald’s Europe’s decision to source white fish products exclusively from fisheries that have met the rigorous MSC standard for sustainability is a tremendous testament to the ability of our industry leaders to transform the seafood market and help drive changes on the water,” said Rupert Howes, CEO of the MSC. “This is a fantastic achievement and we hope that others will follow their lead.”
McDonald’s Global Sustainable Fisheries Policy was developed in 2003 with the help of Jim Cannon at Conservation International, now founder and CEO of the Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP). The policy requires that an annual independent assessment be carried out by the SFP at each of the fisheries from which McDonald’s sources fish, using the latest scientific data to rate each fishery according to fish stock status, management quality and marine environment and biodiversity conservation.
One fishery for which the certification is a particular achievement is the Espersen cod fishery in the Eastern Baltic Sea, which just five years ago was at risk of collapsing. McDonald’s thus stopped sourcing fish from there.
Even so, McDonald’s remained engaged while fish supplier Espersen and the SFP worked with regional fishers to improve sustainability. McDonald’s decision to pull out of the Eastern Baltic encouraged Espersen and other fish suppliers to improve their ways.
Five years later, fishing mortality in the Eastern Baltic is at its lowest since the 1940s, MSC explained. McDonald’s is once again sourcing fish from the region.
By Natalia Real