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One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish is Not Sold Here Fish
Over the weekend Whole Foods Market announced that they would be making a major change to their seafood departments. They are going to stop selling certain species of fish because they are unsustainable. This new policy comes a whole year before Whole Foods’ original deadline to begin the practice.
The change will start on April 22nd or Earth Day and it means there will no longer be red-rated, wild caught fish sold in their stores. Examples are: Atlantic halibut, grey sole, and skate. Instead customers will be directed to purchase fish that are similar but sustainable like Pacific halibut which is a Marine Steward Council (MSC)-certified fish. The MSC-certification is on any wild caught, sustainable fish that doesn’t have the color-coded label the store also uses.
The seafood departments stoplight colored rating system, which works well at a glance for quick decision making, was set forth in 2010 by Whole Foods and two non-profit organizations: Blue Ocean Institute and Monterrey Bay Aquarium.
Frequent shoppers will be familiar with the system but for those who aren’t this is what each tier means:
Green still means go or in this case “Best Choice” because the“species are abundant and are caught in environmentally friendly ways” such as with a harpoon? The swordfish in Nova Scotia are caught in this fashion and are MSC-certified.
Yellow- “Good Alternative”- means slow down and proceed with caution because this fish may have been caught with a method that is not as environmentally friendly as we would like or the species is being monitored for sustainability. Let’s assume this tier could include harpooned fish too because some might not consider that method “friendly”.
Red means this fish tastes great but you need to stop because it’s being overfished and the marine habitat is being harmed. Armed with that knowledge it’s amazing the red-rated fish were even bought buy conscientious customers. The store has a history of flat out not selling certain species, like orange roughy and bluefin tuna, with known sustainability issues.
The store’s officials are happy and so are their partners. Alan Duckworth a research scientist at the Blue Ocean Institute said, “This is an amazing accomplishment, as it will help protect fish numbers and habitats, while reducing the accidental catch of seabirds and sea turtles. This positive step from Whole Foods Market will directly result in healthier, more vibrant oceans.”
For a searchable database of MSC-certified seafood brands and participating retailers (even Wal-mart is listed) please visit their website.
1944: Camano Class Light Cargo Ship was laid down for the US Army as FS-289 at Wheeler Shipbuilding in Whitestone, NY.
1955 - 1963: Used as a cargo supply ship for the Texas Towers, a network of advanced radar stations located off the Eastern Seaboard. In 1957, Capt. Sixto Mangual was commander of the AKL-17 and in 1961 it was rechristened the USNS New Bedford. The New Bedford, sailing out of State Pier, was keeping vigil when Texas Tower No. 4 callapsed off the New Jersey coast during a January 1961 nor'easter.
2006: Design of the Tesla Turbine began on June 11, 2006. The Sea Bird was sold by Defense Reutilization and Marketing Service for commercial service.