In a move that is a global first, ASDA has become the first supermarket to publish a review of its fish stock, along with an analysis of how the difference types of fish were caught and where. This was done in response to customer feedback.
The supermarket giant has named the list the “Wild Fisheries Annual Reviews” and it contains details of all the fisheries that it has used between 1st January 2013 and 1st December 2013. There is also additional information about the methods that were used for catching the fish, along with the environmental impacts on the local ecological landscape.
The report shows that the supermarket uses around 64 fisheries, with 24 of them being certified as sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council. The council is a leading independent body who looks at fisheries around the global and monitor sustainability levels. 10 of the fisheries used by ASDA are undergoing general improvement, with another 5 being reviewed.
5 of the fisheries used by ASDA are in excellent condition, according to the Sustainable Fisheries Partnership, of the SFP, as well as a further 8 being in good condition. Some of the fisheries have been improved, such as those that have European plaice and sprat; however, it isn’t all good news, as edible crabs from Scotland and mackerel fisheries that are based in India have been found to be in need of significant improvement.
The report is expected to released on an annual basis each yeah, in a bid to raise awareness for the impact that climate change will have on levels of food stock. Greenpeace have welcomes the development, with the head of its ocean campaign, Sarah North, describing it as
Greenpeace applauds ASDA for this bold display of honesty and transparency about the seafood they sell. Now ASDA’s customers in the UK will be armed with the information they need to choose more sustainable fish, and can follow ASDA’s journey as it continues to work hard to improve its seafood sourcing. We sincerely hope that other retailers in the UK and beyond now follow ASDA’s lead.
There has also been support from celebrities, such as chef, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall who said that
I applaud this step by ASDA to be transparent about all the wild seafood that has their name on it. It shows a mixed picture: over a third of the fisheries are certified sustainable, but several of them – like those for dredged scallops and rays – remain a real cause for concern environmentally. But it is refreshing to have this sort of openness from one of our biggest fishmongers.