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PCC #1 for sustainable seafood

Sound Consumer | September 2009

(September 2009) — Greenpeace USA has announced that it ranks PCC as the #1 retailer in the United States for our sustainable seafood policies and initiatives. We received a higher rating than any other grocer in the country.

Sustainable tuna

One reason PCC earned the #1 ranking is that we undertook an extensive review of our canned seafood to make sure it meets sustainability standards — unlike any other U.S. retailer.

We’ve always made sure all our fresh seafood complies with strict standards for sustainability. Now our canned seafood is no exception. As an official retail partner of the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch program, we worked with them to do months of thorough research about the sources of our tuna.

This was a difficult task! Misleading labels such as “dolphin-safe” may cause shoppers to think the tuna is sustainable when really it is not. The sustainability of tuna is determined by complex factors, including the variety of fish (yellowfin, albacore, skipjack), the fishing method (long-lines, poles, purse seines), and the specific location where the tuna is caught.

We made dozens of phone calls and e-mailed our suppliers, demanding details about how and where the tuna is sourced.

The global demand for tuna has led to overfishing some species, pushing them toward extinction. Most tuna, in fact, is fished in ways that produce large quantities of bycatch and reduce biodiversity. Habitat destruction and illegal pirate fishing also are problems worldwide.

We’ve discontinued several brands that do not meet Seafood Watch standards and replaced them with great tasting, sustainable options. The brands we now carry include Sweet Creek, Pelican’s Choice, Tuna Guys, and Wild Planet — all albacore, all pole-caught, all from the Pacific Northwest, all sustainable.

What’s good for the oceans also is good for you: these tunas are tested to be comparatively low in contaminants.

More about: Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch program, sustainable seafood

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