Thai shrimp: A journey toward sustainability

Mon, 06 Jul 2020 16:19:09 -0700


Thailand is the world’s sixth-largest producer of shrimp and provides 19 percent of the shrimp we eat in the U.S. In our 2010 assessments for Thailand, we rated 75 percent of Thai shrimp Avoid. This month we have good news: we’ve released a Good Alternative recommendation for farmed shrimp from Thailand that covers 95 percent of all shrimp it produces. It’s a significant development—and it didn’t happen overnight. To understand how Thailand made these important improvements, it helps to first understand how Seafood Watch assesses farmed seafoods and a bit of the Thai industry’s recent history. 

Farmed shrimp, wild feed

The shrimp we import from Thailand is farmed, but their feed contains wild-caught seafood from the Thai trawl fleet. In the years since we last assessed Thai farmed shrimp, the trawl fleet has been scrutinized for poorly managed, indiscriminate fishing and human rights abuses. So much negative information came to light that the Feed criterion in our assessment seemed likely to fall from its previous Good Alternative rating to a Critical rating in the updated version. 

The Thai government responded by enacting strict management plans that helped improve practices in ways that benefit both people and ecosystems.  And shrimp farmers relied less on seafood from the fishery. Those two changes resulted in an Avoid rating for the Feed criterion in our updated assessment. While this isn’t a good or sustainable rating, it is one step above Critical. 

Why does this matter? If even one of the ten criteria we consider in an aquaculture assessment is rated Critical (or if two are rated Avoid) the overall result will be an Avoid rating. So this small shift means we don’t downgrade the entire shrimp rating based on the Feed score alone.

Water, waste and disease

There were other problems with Thai shrimp farms. In 2010, most farms didn’t do a good job of managing water quality in their ponds. They frequently released the water into the surrounding environment, releasing chemicals, shrimp feces and uneaten feed. That set the stage for tragedy when it created conditions for the spread in 2012 of acute hepatopancreatic necrosis disease (AHPND) on shrimp farms. The disease wreaked havoc on the digestive systems of shrimp and destroyed that year’s harvest. Poor water quality management allowed the bacteria to grow rapidly in shrimp ponds, wiping out entire ponds within days.

It soon became clear that the bacteria were widespread in the land and water around farms. Within a year, production had fallen by 50 percent, bankrupting farmers and shuttering farms across the country.

A minority of farms, representing the 25 percent of total production we rated yellow in 2010, took a different approach. They treated and maintained their pond water, discharging little or no water to the surrounding environment, even during harvest time. This required the farms to be more diligent in keeping their water clean—a practice that served them well during the outbreak. They set a clear example for the broader industry of the importance of water management. 

As the industry began to regroup after the catastrophe, farmers converted fallow ponds into storage reservoirs and sedimentation basins to enable water treatment and reuse. This led to cleaner water, lower risk of escapes into the wild and less chance for the spread of disease-causing bacteria.

The next steps

Our new Good Alternative rating for Thai farmed shrimp has nine yellow criteria and one red criterion. That means there’s still substantial room for improvement. The key will be if government oversight is maintained and strengthened over time. The Feed criterion, in particular, would benefit from additional and improved government oversight, including action to eliminate or reduce the amount of wild-caught shrimp feed sourced from the Thai trawl fleet. On the industry side, farmers and their trade associations will have to engage in good faith with the government and commit to making sure that new policies are implemented on their farms.

While there’s a lot still to be done, the Thai shrimp farming industry has shown remarkable ingenuity in overcoming disease and economic disaster to build a new system of cleaner, more efficient and more responsible farms. For the sake of Thai farmers, the health of the ocean and the shrimp on our plates, let’s hope they continue pushing forward.

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America’s seafood community needs our help!Support the seafood...

Sun, 03 May 2020 10:08:49 -0700










America’s seafood community needs our help!

Support the seafood community and buy seafood online or from your retailer to cook at home, or order from your favorite local restaurants for delivery or pick-up.

Eating seafood is a great way to boost your immune system while supporting millions of fishermen and water farmers during this challenging time. Check out SeafoodWatch.org for guidance on seafood sustainability and checkout SeafoodNutrition.org for info on eating healthier.

Photo courtesy of the Monterey Bay Fisheries Trust who is working to support our Monterey fishermen.

Read More >

Sneak peek: updates to the Seafood Slavery Risk Tool

Mon, 27 Apr 2020 10:09:53 -0700


By Sara McDonald, PhD, Seafood Watch Senior Fisheries Scientist

We are currently testing a new version of the Seafood Slavery Risk Tool. Get an inside scoop of the upcoming changes. 

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In 2015, investigative news articles about human trafficking and forced labor in the Thai fishing fleet brought slavery to the forefront of seafood industry concerns. The grim articles were given further weight by the industry consensus that human rights abuses weren’t limited to Thai vessels. We developed the Seafood Slavery Risk Tool in partnership with the Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP) and Liberty Shared in response to requests from our business partners to identify the risk of slavery in their supply chains. The Risk Tool is now run by a new, US non-profit, SSRT, Inc.

The prototype Risk Tool launched in February 2018. It used a decision tree based on publicly available evidence to establish a risk rating. Six months later, we paused to consider what was working and what could be improved. One strength: the expert analysis and in-depth synthesis of publicly available information was frequently cited by outside experts as unique and valuable. On the other hand, direct evidence of forced labor, human trafficking or hazardous child labor, rarely exists for specific fisheries. Simply put, fishermen who engage in illegal practices usually aren’t forthcoming with information. Because of that, we frequently relied on country-level information to rate fisheries. The result was many high-risk ratings that failed to show the nuance between fisheries. That was enough to warrant beginning work on a second, more accurate and useful version of the Risk Tool.

Risk Tool 2.0

The improved Risk Tool analyzes risk throughout the whole seafood value chain: fisheries, aquaculture operations and seafood processing; and the business environment in which they operate. We’ve eliminated risk ratings and the decision tree and instead focus on relative risk; e.g. the products or parts of a system that are the riskiest overall. This also allows us to use indicators, identified through a literature review, to describe risk. The indicators are factors that can increase or decrease the risk of human trafficking, forced labor and hazardous child labor within a seafood production system (e.g., presence of illegal, unregulated or unreported fishing, corruption, or protections for workers).

“I am so impressed with the direction it’s taken and the revised methodology. I really appreciate the combined approach of using country-, industry-, and activity-level indicators and that they cover direct evidence, causal risk and correlated practices.” 
–  Elena Finkbeiner, PhD, Conservation International. 

The Risk Tool uses both public and non-public (e.g., social audits, non-published reports, etc.) information, and recognizes that a lack of transparency and information is inherently risky.

The new Risk Tool will:

  • Prioritize seafood systems based on global seafood trade data and focusing on products imported into the E.U. and the U.S. We’re piloting this methodology in an assessment of wild-caught, tropical tuna production in Europe, Asia and the Americas.
  • Feature interactive maps that display the relative risk of forced labor, human trafficking, and hazardous child labor. The first version will feature different tropical tuna fishing and processing countries, with more to come. Areas that lack transparency will be mapped to indicate the “black box” nature of the information.
  • Have 19 tropical tuna profiles at launch. We are pursuing additional funding for SSRT, Inc. to continue developing data visualizations and to begin assessment of another large-scale seafood system.
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Human rights abuses in the seafood supply chain are real, widespread and very difficult to track. The Seafood Slavery Risk Tool is the only tool that comprehensively evaluates the risk of forced labor, human trafficking, and hazardous child labor in the entire seafood value chain. Due to the opaque, and complex nature of human rights abuses in seafood, seafood businesses must be willing to conduct due diligence based on accurate intelligence. We believe that this new version of the Risk Tool can provide that intelligence and play an important role in combating forced labor, human trafficking, and hazardous child labor in seafood systems

Sign up to receive notifications on the public beta launch or contact SSRT, Inc. with questions. 

Read More >

What do you call them? 🦞 Crawfish? Crayfish? Crawdads? Mudbugs?...

Mon, 27 Apr 2020 10:05:00 -0700








What do you call them? 🦞 Crawfish? Crayfish? Crawdads? Mudbugs? Honey, I shrank the lobsters?

Whatever you like to call these little red crustaceans, we recommend purchasing them if they are caught or farmed in the United States.

Take a pass on crayfish from China as they are on our red Avoid list. Management and regulatory enforcement are weak to non-existent, leading to serious concerns about the impacts of waste and escapes.

View all our crayfish and other sustainable seafood recommendations on SeafoodWatch.org.

Photos by sustainable seafood advocate Chef Samuel Monsour.

Read More >

World Oceans Day on June 8: How businesses can celebrate

Thu, 23 Apr 2020 10:06:10 -0700


World Oceans Day is a great opportunity to raise awareness about sustainable seafood — we challenge you to get involved! Will you join us in making a splash on World Oceans Day? 

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Ways for businesses to get involved

  • Highlight a green Best Choice seafood dish. If you are open, feature it as a World Oceans Day special. You can search for seafood suppliers that sell seafood recommended by our program on FishChoice.com. Otherwise, consider doing something on social media like a cooking video or live stream.

  • Ask your team to wish people a happy World Oceans Day and start a conversation around sustainability.

  • Print out our consumer guides and share them with your deliveries or take-out orders.

  • Encourage your team and other businesses to get involved with our program and free resources by sending them this link.

  • Register your event or activity for free on WorldOceansDay.org. They also have additional tips and online resources.


Social Media

Hashtags: #WorldOceansDay #SeafoodSmarter #SeafoodWatch
Accounts to Tag: @WorldOceansDay @SeafoodWatch​
Sample Post:

Join us for #WorldOceansDay on Monday, June 8! We’ll be featuring (seafood dish name). (Species name + catch/farming method + location) are rated as a green Best Choice by the Monterey Bay Aquarium @seafoodwatch program. Use SeafoodWatch.org to make better seafood choices for a healthy ocean! #SeafoodSmarter

Reminder: if you are communicating a Seafood Watch rating, make sure to include where the seafood is from and how it was caught or farmed. You can access all our seafood recommendations on SeafoodWatch.org.

Example: Chilipepper rockfish caught in Alaska with bottom trawls is a Seafood Watch Best Choice. 

You can find more guidance on how to communicate Seafood Watch ratings or how to make a public commitment in our Seafood Sustainability Guide for Businesses. Sign up to receive our Sustainability Guide on our website

Read More >

Celebrate  Earth Day 2020 where you are by helping your community and the planet

Wed, 22 Apr 2020 11:58:05 -0700


seafoodwatch:

We live on an amazing planet. This Earth Day, April 22 (Wed.), we want to take time to celebrate and appreciate the place where we live. At the Monterey Bay Aquarium, our mission is to inspire conservation of the ocean, one of Earth’s largest habitats.

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This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Earth Day movement. The first Earth Day united over 20 million Americans—10% of the U.S. population at the time—to protest the treatment of the environment and demand a new way forward for our planet. This year, instead of events on city streets, college campuses, businesses and community parks, most events will be more personal or virtual.

Here are some ways you can celebrate that support both your community and the planet during this challenging time.

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For those who can, use your time outdoors to pick up some litter

Take a break from the screens, enjoy some fresh-air and spruce up your neighborhood a bit. Bring a trash bag with you on your journey – you’ll be surprised by how many pieces of garbage you pick up along the way (don’t forget your gloves!).

image


Plant something new or tend to your garden

It’s Earth Day after all, the perfect time to get your hands dirty! Gardening is a great activity that can be therapeutic to you and the planet. As plants and trees grow, they help fight climate change by removing carbon dioxide from the air. Plus, everyone around gets to enjoy the natural beauty! 

image


Make a special Earth Day meal for family or roommates

One major threat to our ocean is unsustainable fishing practices. Use SeafoodWatch.org as a free resource to make better seafood choices for a healthy ocean. Choose a green Best Choice seafood dish, or consider avoiding animal protein by opting for something vegan or vegetarian. Or take the night off and order take-out from one of the small, local restaurants in your area that will greatly benefit from your business right now. They’ll be happy to hear from you!

image


Shop with community in mind

A great way to support your community is by shopping at your local farmer’s market. You can also consider signing up for a community support fishery or ordering seafood online to give business to local fishermen.

image


Inspire with your art

Through painting and art, you can inspire and encourage others to take actions and change habits to help conserve our planet. Create art in honor of Earth Day and post it to Instagram to receive a coupon for one free kid’s meal at Pacific Catch and a chance to win other prizes such as tickets to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Get creative with our Earth Day Art Contest.

image


Spread awareness online

Social media is a powerful way to reach people during this time of quarantine. It could be as simple as posting a beautiful photo of your favorite beach or mountain range (be sure to include #earthday). Or, if you’re up for the challenge, reach out to your favorite restaurant or retailer and let them know about our online tools and resources. Any business can sign up for free seafood sustainability guidance to help support our ocean.

image


Attend a virtual Earth Day Event

There are hundreds of Earth Day events listed on EarthDay.org. Earth Day Network’s mission is to diversify, educate and activate the environmental movement worldwide. 

The day before Earth Day, we will be hosting a webinar on our Seafood Carbon Emissions Tool on Tuesday, April 22 at 11 a.m. PDT. 


Related resources
Shopping & dining tips from Seafood Watch
2020 Seafood Watch consumer guides
For businesses: get involved with Seafood Watch
Video: Why rely on Seafood Watch recommendations

Read More >

seafoodwatch: You Can Put Your Seaweed In There Tips for Enjoying Seaweed Seaweed rates as a...

Mon, 20 Apr 2020 13:31:04 -0700


seafoodwatch:

You Can Put Your Seaweed In There

Tips for Enjoying Seaweed

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Seaweed rates as a Seafood Watch Best Choice. It’s tasty and nutritious but many might not be sure what to do with it. Well, not to worry, we’ve got some great ideas and tips for you. 

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Incredibly creative chefs across California have started putting Monterey Bay Seaweeds on their menus. Sometimes, chefs call it sea vegetables, sea salad, native kelps or just simply seaweed. Regardless, we take our hats off to all of the chefs incorporating the brand-new, age-old ingredient.

Infusions & Elixirs to Broths & Bitters

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You can bring a new dimension to the bar menu by using seaweed in classic favorites or to create new cocktails. Try infusing fresh, raw sea lettuce overnight in either gin or vodka for a light green Monterey Bay Martini. Perhaps enhance a traditional Blood Mary by adding a hearty dose of umami with a splash of dulse broth. Make a flight of Dockside Shots by adding seaweeds to each glass.

Special Bar Notes:

  • Fresh, raw green sea lettuce will lightly color a clear spirit if left to infuse overnight. Perfect for a Monterey Bay Martini.
  • Fresh ogo seaweed turns from a dark burgundy color to a bright orange when submerged in alcohol. It happens quickly and is beautiful.
  • Ooh Mommy Bloody Mary is a perfect brunch offering with a side dish of crispy fried dulse. Salty and bacon-like, fried dulse is the perfect bar snack.
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Salads and Crispy Snacks

Seaweed is not just enhancing bar menus—it’s in the kitchen, too. For instance, the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Café and Restaurant has sustainable seaweed delivered from Monterey Bay Seaweeds every week. “It’s become irreplaceable for our day-to-day cooking,” says Chef Matt Beaudin. “It’s not often that you find a new, sustainable ingredient that can be incorporated into almost any dish.”

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Here are a few ways some of our Seafood Watch restaurant partners are using seaweed to kick-start your own ideas:

Different Seaweeds for Different Tastes

Monterey Bay Seaweeds cultivates three types of seaweed: west coast dulse, sea lettuce and ogo. Each description below offers information on each one’s distinct characteristics and how to cook with them.

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Dulse is a thicker brownish variety of red seaweed that is known for its “bacon-like” flavor when fried. It can be used raw, steamed, fried or as part of a flavorful broth. When cooked, it will lose its reddish-brown color and turn a deep green. Dulse becomes very crisp when fried and served as a salty bar snack, crumbled over other ingredients or used in structured layers to enhance the appearance of dishes. A rare find on the West Coast, fresh dulse is available to chefs daily, delivered raw, and still alive in packaged sterilized seawater.

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Crisp, light and salty, ogo is a signature ingredient in poke bowls (raw tuna salad) and is also known as limu in Hawaii. Ogo is great when served raw in salads, cold broths, shellfish preparations and with ceviche or sushi. It can be steamed or used in cold infusions. Pastry chefs like ogo for its “jellifying” properties, and it’s one of the seaweeds used to make agar, an ingredient that provides texture in many dessert recipes.

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Green sea lettuce has a delicate, sheet-like structure and bright emerald green color, enhancing the look of many dishes. It adds a clean, crisp taste, and can be added to salads or soups and used to wrap fish.

More at MontereyBaySeaweeds.com

Read More >

Celebrate  Earth Day 2020 where you are by helping your community and the planet

Sun, 19 Apr 2020 12:53:15 -0700


We live on an amazing planet. This Earth Day, April 22 (Wed.), we want to take time to celebrate and appreciate the place where we live. At the Monterey Bay Aquarium, our mission is to inspire conservation of the ocean, one of Earth’s largest habitats.

image


This year marks the 50th anniversary of the Earth Day movement. The first Earth Day united over 20 million Americans—10% of the U.S. population at the time—to protest the treatment of the environment and demand a new way forward for our planet. This year, instead of events on city streets, college campuses, businesses and community parks, most events will be more personal or virtual.

Here are some ways you can celebrate that support both your community and the planet during this challenging time.

image


For those who can, use your time outdoors to pick up some litter

Take a break from the screens, enjoy some fresh-air and spruce up your neighborhood a bit. Bring a trash bag with you on your journey – you’ll be surprised by how many pieces of garbage you pick up along the way (don’t forget your gloves!).

image


Plant something new or tend to your garden

It’s Earth Day after all, the perfect time to get your hands dirty! Gardening is a great activity that can be therapeutic to you and the planet. As plants and trees grow, they help fight climate change by removing carbon dioxide from the air. Plus, everyone around gets to enjoy the natural beauty! 

image


Make a special Earth Day meal for family or roommates

One major threat to our ocean is unsustainable fishing practices. Use SeafoodWatch.org as a free resource to make better seafood choices for a healthy ocean. Choose a green Best Choice seafood dish, or consider avoiding animal protein by opting for something vegan or vegetarian. Or take the night off and order take-out from one of the small, local restaurants in your area that will greatly benefit from your business right now. They’ll be happy to hear from you!

image


Shop with community in mind

A great way to support your community is by shopping at your local farmer’s market. You can also consider signing up for a community support fishery or ordering seafood online to give business to local fishermen.

image


Inspire with your art

Through painting and art, you can inspire and encourage others to take actions and change habits to help conserve our planet. Create art in honor of Earth Day and post it to Instagram to receive a coupon for one free kid’s meal at Pacific Catch and a chance to win other prizes such as tickets to the Monterey Bay Aquarium. Get creative with our Earth Day Art Contest.

image


Spread awareness online

Social media is a powerful way to reach people during this time of quarantine. It could be as simple as posting a beautiful photo of your favorite beach or mountain range (be sure to include #earthday). Or, if you’re up for the challenge, reach out to your favorite restaurant or retailer and let them know about our online tools and resources. Any business can sign up for free seafood sustainability guidance to help support our ocean.

image


Attend a virtual Earth Day Event

There are hundreds of Earth Day events listed on EarthDay.org. Earth Day Network’s mission is to diversify, educate and activate the environmental movement worldwide. 

The day before Earth Day, we will be hosting a webinar on our Seafood Carbon Emissions Tool on Tuesday, April 22 at 11 a.m. PDT. 


Related resources
Shopping & dining tips from Seafood Watch
2020 Seafood Watch consumer guides
For businesses: get involved with Seafood Watch
Video: Why rely on Seafood Watch recommendations

Read More >

There is a spectacular spectrum of sharks! Some are speedy, some...

Sun, 19 Apr 2020 12:35:53 -0700




There is a spectacular spectrum of sharks! 

Some are speedy, some are slow. Many feast on fish, while others prefer to slurp worms or filter plankton. Their ancestors swam the seas before dinosaurs roamed the land. Today, many populations are threatened — and face an uncertain future.

Fish and sharks often have an overlap in habitat, and for this reason it’s common for sharks to be incidentally caught as bycatch in certain large scale fisheries. This accidental catch is a major contributing factor to the global decline in shark populations. You can help by using our science-based recommendations, which take bycatch levels into consideration.  www.seafoodwatch.org

Read More >

Everything You Need To Know About The Coronavirus And Seafood...

Fri, 17 Apr 2020 17:08:55 -0700




Everything You Need To Know About The Coronavirus And Seafood Safety

“According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, there is no evidence suggesting that the coronavirus can be spread through food products or food packaging.” - Forbes

Read the full article by Ariella Simke on Forbes.com

Read More >

Webinar: The Seafood Carbon Emissions Tool

Tue, 14 Apr 2020 13:46:22 -0700


April 21, 2020 (Tues.) from 11-11:45 a.m. PDT

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The Seafood Carbon Emissions Tool allows users to explore and compare the carbon footprint of their seafood choices, wild or farmed—and even compare their seafood choices to land-based protein sources. The Tool, built in partnership with Dalhousie University, includes estimates for over 150 combinations of species and gear types or farming methods. The estimates are for emissions generated up to the dock where the fish is landed or, for farmed fish, everything that happens at the farm. Because the same seafood product can be processed in various ways and transported by various methods over different distances, the estimates do not include processing or transportation to your local market. The built-in “transport calculator” will assist you with assessing food miles.

Join us for a webinar where we will provide a basic introduction, overview and demonstration of the Carbon Tool and provide the opportunity to dig deep and ask specific questions.

April 21, 2020 (Tues.)
11-11:45 a.m. PDT

Click here to join the Webex meeting on April 21
Meeting number (access code): 283 070 828
Meeting password: EarthWeek2020

Join by phone
+1-415-655-0003 United States TOLL
+1-855-282-6330 United States TOLL FREE
Global call-in numbers  |  Toll-free calling restrictions    

Join from a video system or application       
Dial [email protected]     
You can also dial 173.243.2.68 and enter your meeting number.    

Join using Microsoft Lync or Microsoft Skype for Business         
Dial [email protected]                  

Need help? Go to http://help.webex.com

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Do you want to be looped in on future webinars? Businesses can sign up to get connected to our free tools resources and online opportunities. Consumers can sign up for our e-newsletter updates on the bottom-right corner of our homepage

Related Links
Webinar recording: A deep dive with Seafood Watch
Video: Why rely on Seafood Watch recommendations?
Seafood Watch website 

Read More >

We hosted a seaweed tasting at an event in San Francisco...

Wed, 08 Apr 2020 14:45:08 -0700




We hosted a seaweed tasting at an event in San Francisco called Planet Home. The festival brought together solutionists to tackle how we eat, make, move and live to help protect the health of our planet. Hear from our Outreach Manager Peter Adame talk about our program.

Read More >

If you love salmon too 🍣💘 Here’s six delicious salmon meal ideas...

Wed, 08 Apr 2020 14:42:49 -0700














If you love salmon too 🍣💘 Here’s six delicious salmon meal ideas for inspiration 😋

Seafood Watch has a lot of different salmon recommendations and you can see them all on SeafoodWatch.org. Some salmon we recommend includes salmon from the U.S. (Alaska, California, Oregon), New Zealand and any salmon farmed in closed, indoor tanks. Take a pass on farmed salmon from Chile, Scotland and Norway because they are on our Red Avoid list, but note there are some exceptions you can find listed on our website.

FEATURED SALMON DISHES:
1️⃣   10 minute Salmon lunch!
Baked wild salmon seasoned with olive oil, lemon and ground black pepper with egg cooked in avocado oil, sautéed garlic, spinach and half an avocado.

2️⃣   Salmon + Avo Bagel Brunch
with a soft boiled egg, toasted bagels, mashed avocado and arugula salad with tomatoes, olives and a squeeze of lemon.

3️⃣   Salmon Pick ‘N’ Mix
Salmon with a bit of everything .. Healthy zucchini noodles sautéed with garlic, salt and pepper, half an avocado and a pasture raised fried egg, blistered tomatoes + lots of lemon!

4️⃣   Salmon and Greek Salad Heaven
Starting off with toasted flax quinoa bread with smashed avocado smoked salmon and a poached egg.

5️⃣   Sweet Chilli Salmon with Grilled Pinapple
roasted sweetcorn, perfectly ripe avocado, steamed Broccoli and chilli flakes.

6️⃣   A big bowl of yummy goodness
Smoked salmon with halloumi cheese, tomatoes, cucumber, asparagus, olives and spinach with lemon turmeric dressing made with avocado oil.

Post via @calories.hub on IG and beautiful pictures by food blogger Zest My Lemon.

Read More >

Fish and sharks often have an overlap in habitat, and for this...

Mon, 06 Apr 2020 17:34:48 -0700




Fish and sharks often have an overlap in habitat, and for this reason it’s very common for sharks to be incidentally caught as bycatch in large scale fisheries. This accidental catch is a major contributing factor to the global decline in shark populations. You can help by using our science-based recommendations, which take bycatch levels into consideration. 

Photo: OneOcean Diving research intern Kayleigh Slowey of several sandbar sharks with a small school of scad mackerel (opelu)! 

Read More >

Get heart smart! With at least 48% of all U.S. adults having...

Mon, 06 Apr 2020 17:33:19 -0700




Get heart smart! 

With at least 48% of all U.S. adults having some form of cardiovascular disease, such as coronary artery disease, stroke, heart failure and high blood pressure – it is imperative to be proactive with your heart health. [American Heart Association]⁠

Small changes can make a big difference:
Committing to a heart-healthy diet, low in sodium, is one way to increase the longevity of your life. Doing so is imperative to managing your blood pressure and reducing your risk of heart attack and even stroke.⁠

Help our ocean in the process:
When adding more seafood into your diet, visit SeafoodWatch.org to find seafood that is well-managed and caught or farmed responsibly. While Seafood Watch is a free guide for sustainability, you can also check out SeafoodNutrition.org (IG: seafood4health) to learn more about the essential nutritional benefits of eating seafood. 

Striped bass farmed in Mexico is rated a yellow Good Alternative and called “suzuki” in sushi.

Photo: Pacifico Aquaculture

Read More >

Seafood Watch Standards Update

Fri, 27 Mar 2020 14:51:00 -0700


We just completed a review process of the standards that underpin our program with the help from seafood experts from around the globe.

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In February, the Seafood Watch Multi-Stakeholder Group approved revisions to our standards for fisheries, aquaculture and salmon fisheries. We revise our standards every five years to reflect the best available science and maintain a high, practicable bar for sustainability. The year-long revision process includes multiple public consultation periods and many meetings with our advisory committees and other experts. Updates to the standards are summarized below and the complete Standard documents are available in their entirety at SeafoodWatch.org.  

  • The Standard for Fisheries now better reflects the impact of fishing for forage species and ghost gear, and allows for improved assessment in data-poor situations.
  • The Standard for Aquaculture Feed criterion was restructured and now better accounts for the ecological impacts of byproducts and makes use of a new Life Cycle Analysis database to estimate impacts across land and water-based feed ingredients.


Overview of criteria for our Fisheries Standard
(Wild-caught seafood)

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Overview of Criteria for our Aquaculture Standard
(Farm-raised seafood)

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All of our standards are publicly available and outlined in detail on our website. 

Read More >

Seafood Watch Webinar on Thursday, March 26 at 10 a.m. PDT

Wed, 25 Mar 2020 15:20:16 -0700


Join us for our first webinar of 2020: A deep dive with Seafood Watch. Get a peek behind the scenes of the Seafood Watch program, including:

  • The history of our program
  • A breakdown of our different teams
  • The criteria we use in our science-based assessments
  • Our report-writing process and methodology

This webinar will take place on Thursday, March 26 at 10 a.m. PDT. 

Click this link to launch the webinar on March 26

Join by phone:  

+1-855-282-6330 United States toll free            
0008-00852-1525 India toll free  
Attendee access code: 240 146 33          

Global call-in numbers | Toll-free calling restrictions


Do you want to be looped in on future webinars  Businesses can sign-up to gain access to our free tools and resources, including future webinars. Consumer can sign-up for our e-newsletter updates on the bottom-right corner of our homepage

Read More >

Is our hunger for poke a threat for the environment and the...

Wed, 25 Mar 2020 11:19:14 -0700




Is our hunger for poke a threat for the environment and the fishing industry?  

Poke, a dish made from raw yellowfin tuna (or ahi), is growing in popularity far beyond its native Hawaii. But the trend comes with many consequences for the environment and the fishing industry. Ahi tuna is the most sought after wild fish in the sea and the growing demand is putting increased stress on worldwide stocks.  

“You can’t be sure every dish of seafood you eat will be sustainable,” says Ryan Bigelow from Seafood Watch, “But no one person is going to save the ocean or ruin it in a day. Your strength is your voice, so don’t be afraid to ask questions.”

To enjoy poke with a better conscience, ask your server questions: What species of tuna is it? Where is the tuna from? How was it caught? You can use SeafoodWatch.org as a free guide to make better seafood choices.  

Continue reading on longreads.com, The Poke Paradox.

Read More >

Learn about sustainable seafood: fun and educational materials from Seafood Watch

Mon, 16 Mar 2020 18:06:14 -0700


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Seafood Watch Cafe Interactive
The Seafood Watch Cafe is a web-based interactive that features a humorous chef who describes the pros and cons of eating various types of seafood! The main message is that some seafood choices have hidden environmental costs. Presented in English, Spanish and Portuguese, it is similar to a menu so that users can select the seafood they’re interested in learning about. The interactive is best used on larger monitors like tablets, laptops and desktop computers. 

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YouTube videos: commercial fishing and farming methods
Fishermen use a wide range of gear to land their catch and there are several different methods to farm seafood. Every type has its own effects on the ocean. By selecting the right gear or farming method, the fishing industry can help minimize its impact on the environment.

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Explore the Ocean Issues section of our website 
The ocean supplies us with food, helps regulate our climate and provides livelihoods for millions of people. We depend on it for recreation and renewal. But the bounty of our seas is not endless. Today, human activities impact even the most remote parts of the ocean. There are many factors impacting our ocean, including unsustainable fishing and aquaculture. Through better practices, we can create a healthy, abundant ocean for everyone.

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Listen to a podcast on various sustainable seafood topics
Need a good podcast to listen to? Check out these episodes on sustainable seafood from various podcast stations. Podcasts are a great way to learn weather you are on a long commute in a car, getting outside for some exercise or doing chores around the house. 

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Access inspiring curriculum from Monterey Bay Aquarium
Make science meaningful with various curriculum provided by the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Education Department. The curriculum will engage your students with hands-on learning and supports Next Generation Science Standards through classroom or field experiences. Sort by grade level, by exhibit or a combination of both.


Science at Home with the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute
This page lists a small collection of activities and lesson plans from MBARI and various other organizations that can be used at home. 


Related resources
Blog: Shopping & Dining Tips from Seafood Watch
Download or order an updated consumer guide
Learn how businesses can get involved 

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Best Lox & Bagel Imagine biting into a bagel loaded with...

Mon, 16 Mar 2020 09:00:32 -0700




Best Lox & Bagel

Imagine biting into a bagel loaded with cream cheese and topped with a bright cushion of lox (thinly sliced cured salmon).

Perhaps you would add some capers, a bit of red onion, tomato and a bit of pepper.

When you combine the salmon, creamy schmear, and chewy bagel it is a satistfying and delicous blend of flavors and texture that is even better when you select a sustainable seafood recommendation.

We invite you to click over to find the best Seafood Watch salmon recommendations.

But tell us, what are your favorite toppings for bagel and lox?

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