Darden Restaurants has taken action in support of healthy ecosystems. (Photo: Darden/FIS)
Darden Restaurants recruits partners to rebuild fisheries
Friday, September 23, 2011, 02:40 (GMT + 9)
Darden Restaurants this week formally announced its three-year commitment to rebuilding troubled fisheries through Fishery Improvement Projects (FIPs). Darden is partnering up with Publix Super Markets and Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP) to conduct initial FIP work within and around the Gulf of Mexico, Darden announced at the Clinton Global Initiative's (CGI) Seventh Annual Meeting.
Darden's submission, "Catalyzing Industry to Rebuild World Fisheries," was selected as the apotheosis of an approach capable of addressing challenges in the environment. It entails commitments to fight illegal fishing, enhance productivity and curb negative ecological impact.
"As one of the largest buyers of seafood in the world, Darden is an industry leader in supporting healthy ecosystems for future generations. Through this commitment, Darden is taking action to create change within the seafood supply chain by building alliances with governments, conservation advocates, and communities to develop and implement fishery improvement," said Jim Cannon, CEO, SFP.
He said the partners hope others will follow suit.
As part of the move, Darden will lead the creation of an alliance of companies, NGOs and other groups (including SFP and Publix), to support targeted fishery improvement projects and thereby address the global fishery crisis and its potential to undermine food supply.
"We are honored the CGI recognizes our efforts to preserve world marine ecosystems that benefit our environment, fishing communities and people around the globe who rely on seafood as a sustainable source of protein," said Ian Olson, Darden's director of sustainability. "We will continue to work with SFP and other organizations to build on the success of our commitment to sustainable aquaculture."
|Darden commits to support responsible fishing and aquaculture. (Photo: Darden Restaurants)
Other contributions include: co-founding the Global Aquaculture Alliance (GAA) to promote aquaculture best practices; partnering with the New England Aquarium to provide current data regarding wild-capture fish and aquaculture species; and supporting work in Caribbean and Canadian fisheries to enhance lobster stocks and ensure a sustainable livelihood for fishers.
"Seafood sustainability is an effort that must be championed not just within our company, but also throughout our industry," said Publix Director of Environmental and Sustainability Programmes, Michael Hewett. "We recognize that only through a unified effort, and with the support of the seafood industry, sustainability efforts will truly advance."
By Natalia Real