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Sustainable Tuna

Consumers are demanding change. We want information about what goes into our systems. We are concerned about sustainability. We want to know that the world will be able to continue with all the present joys of nature, way after we depart.

A great source of protein and a healthy snack, the canned tuna is stacked high on the supermarket shelf. An easy go-to. In terms of sustainability though, it is high on the list of species to be protected.

Due to extreme over-fishing, some tuna species have been reduced dangerously close to the point of extinction.

Tuna can be caught far from where they are processed which leads to a lot of wastage. There are also destructive fishing practises such as fish aggregating devices, FADs, using huge nets and catching fish other than tuna.

There are now more sustainable tuna options than ever. Some of the biggest brands have pledged to end destructive fishing practices. Some take the responsibility seriously. And some, well, let’s say they are vague about their stance.

The best tuna is a ‘pole and line’ caught fish, as it eliminates the problems discussed before. Below are some brands to chuck in your basket and others to chuck altogether!

Fish For Eva – pioneered sustainable pole and line caught tuna and continues to promote fisheries that benefit local communities

Safcol – announced its game-changing switch to 100% pole and line caught tuna last year

Greenseas – have pledged to ban the use of destructive FADs by 2015

Sirena – 100% commitment to pole and line and FAD-free tuna by 2016 or sooner

Coles – uses FAD’s but is committed to eliminating that process. Has a pole and line range

John West – uses destructive FADs, which threaten tuna stocks and unnecessarily kill thousands of tonnes of sharks, baby tuna, rays and even some turtles

Woolworths – their long term goal is to adopt more sustainable fishing practices… mmm vague much?

Sole Mare – uses overfished yellowfin tuna, no information on the fishing method

So, the best way to choose sustainable fish is to always check the labels and go for the pole and line choice. Hopefully your favourite brand is already on board, or planning to jump aboard soon!

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