Approx 460 words.

Want to help protect our oceans? The next time you shop for seafood, try making the sustainable choice.  

Climate change, plastic pollution and overfishing all put pressure on our delicate marine eco-systems, but it might be easier than you think to do your bit to help look after our oceans for future generations.  

A simple way to get involved is to buy responsibly sourced seafood that comes from well managed farms and fisheries. This helps promote ethical ways of catching and producing fish and seafood, minimising our impact on the ocean by helping keep fish stocks and the wider marine eco-system healthy.   

How can I support responsible farms and fisheries? 

1. Choose MSC certified products 

The next time you’re shopping for seafood, look for the blue Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) logo – it’s only given to wild fish and seafood that’s certified as sustainable. Did you know that 75% of Co-op wild-caught seafood products are MSC-certified? 

2. Use the Good Fish Guide app 

Stay up to date on which species of fish are the most and least sustainable with the Good Fish Guide from the Marine Conservation Society.

3. Eat more seasonal, local choices 

The UK imports lots of seafood, but there are plenty of delicious options available from more local fisheries and farms. To see which fish are in season, see this guide from the Marine Conservation Society

4. Shop at the Co-op  

We’re one of the top retailers in the UK that sells sustainable fish. Plus, we’ve proudly worked with the Sustainable Seafood Coalition and the Sustainable Fisheries Partnership to create strict criteria for the labelling and sourcing of seafood.  

Want to get some delicious inspiration for your next fish dish? Have a look at our recipes page.  

5. Spread the word  

One of the easiest and most effective ways to make seafood more sustainable is to spread the word and get even more of your community making ethical choices! 

How is Co-op supporting sustainable farms and fishing? 

Even though we’re one of the top retailers of sustainable fish, we want to do even more to help our oceans. 

That’s why we’re working with Project UK, supporting eight different UK fisheries on the journey to sustainability. Plus, we’re members of the Global Ghost Gear initiative, to help combat the impacts of lost and abandoned fishing gear , and helping co-fund a project further researching the effects this pollution can cause on the environment.  

We also work with our Scottish salmon farmers through the Co-op Irresistible salmon farming group, so you’ll know that when you’re eating, you’re enjoying a delicious piece of  responsibly sourced fish that’s accredited by both RSPCA Assured and Global GAP

Aisla Jones and Ellie Dixon
Fisheries & Aquaculture Manager and Environmental Specialist

Join the conversation! 8 Comments

  1. The following article on Facebook the other day. It mentions Sainsburys but it also says that other supermarkets sell farmed fish that has been fed on fresh fish. I don’t think that the co-op is one of these as they usually quite open and honest but I would be interested to know. Please read.

    Sainsbury’s makes a big play of being a responsible retailer. But Sainsbury’s seafood isn’t sustainable because the farmed salmon you get there are fed fish plundered from the oceans half a world away.

    Last October all major UK supermarkets were caught selling farmed fish linked to the collapse of wild fish populations in Asia and Africa.

    Then this year, experts at Changing Markets and Feedback investigated what the supermarkets are doing to fix the problem — and Sainsbury’s ranked among the very worst.

    There’s no excuse. Sainsbury’s can’t just look the other way while its suppliers drive fish populations and local fishing communities to the brink.

    Tell Sainsbury’s to come clean and stop selling farmed seafood raised on wild caught fish.

  2. Very well written article and important information backed up well. Postive feedback.

  3. Great advice for when I next purchase fish, I am a consumer conscious of buying sustainably sourced fish and this really helps me to make ethical choices more easily!

  4. I have to agree with the above three comments.

  5. I’ve noticed that salmon sold in my Co-op is either Scottish or Norwegian, mostly Norwegian. I’d rather buy Scottish fish if possible so find myself shopping elsewhere for fish. Could the Co-op commit to British fish as they have done with meat please?

  6. Have to agree with Nina Lambert. In addition the amount of Seals that are culled to Sustain this practice. Perhaps The COOP will clarify. I am a great admirer of the work that The COOP do but this subject matter needs to be answered.

  7. I am not happy that salmon farming really is sustainable, given disease problems and the very real welfare considerations. To keep large wild fish in such close proximity all their lives is surely cruel.

    • I agree entirely with Nina’s last comment on fish farming not being so good for the fish themselves or, in fact, the environment. Too many fish cramped together in these false environments encourages lice on the fish due to stress and the sad end for these fish was being mashed up for pet food. The only true sustainability for many creatures is not to buy them in the first place and eat more healthily.


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