Citing environmental concerns, Target has stopped selling farmed salmon products nationwide.
In a statement released Tuesday the retail giant said the decision includes national brands and Target-owned brands, including Archer Farms and Market Pantry.
“All salmon sold under Target owned brands will now be wild-caught Alaskan salmon,” said Target in a statement posted on its web site. “Additionally, sushi featuring farm-raised salmon will complete its transition to wild-caught salmon by the end of 2010.”
Target said it is working with the Monterey Bay Aquarium to ensure that its wild-caught salmon is source responsibly.
“Target strives to be a responsible steward of the environment, while also providing our guests with the highest-quality food choices,” said Greg Duppler, senior vice president, merchandising, Target. “Our guests now have an array of sustainable seafood choices at great prices.”
“Target’s decision to source sustainable wild-caught salmon, instead of farmed, will have a real impact in the marketplace – and ultimately, on the health of our oceans,” said Julie Packard, executive director of the Monterey Bay Aquarium. “Increasing the demand for seafood from ocean-friendly sources, like this Monterey Bay Aquarium ‘Best Choice,’ charts us on a course not only to protect our oceans, but to improve fishing and fish-farming practices around the world.”
Target said its decision was based on the environmental detriments of farmed salmon, including “pollution, chemicals, parasites and non-native farmed fish that escape from salmon farms.” It noted that “Alaskan salmon is among the most intensively managed species in the world, with excellent monitoring of both the fish populations and the fishery.”
The move was applauded Greenpeace, an activist group that releases a sustainable seafood guide. In the most recent edition, released before yesterday’s announcement, Target ranked forth.
“Greenpeace applauds Target’s decision to replace farmed salmon with wild Alaskan salmon, a relatively sustainable and healthy product, throughout its operations,” said Casson Trenor, Greenpeace’s senior markets campaigner. “The company’s decision to address this issue represents an incredible willingness to challenge old paradigms in favor of sound science and environmental preservation, as well as provide real market value to its guests. We have no doubt that the leadership by Target will set a new standard for the seafood industry; one we hope is echoed by other retailers.”
(06/08/2009) In April marine scientist Jennifer Jacquet made the case on her blog Guilty Planet that people should abstain from eating seafood to help save life in the ocean. With fish populations collapsing worldwide and scientists sounding warnings that ocean ecosystems—as edible resources—have only decades left, it is perhaps surprising that Jacquet’s call to abstain from consuming seafood is a lone voice in the wilderness, but thus far few have called for seafood lovers to abstain.
(07/08/2007) Global fishing stocks are in trouble. After expanding from 18 millions tons in 1950 to around 94 million tons in 2000, annual world fish catch has leveled off and may even be declining. Scientists estimate that the number of large predatory fish in the oceans has fallen by 90 percent since the 1950s, while about one-quarter of the world’s fisheries are overexploited, depleted, or recovering from depletion. Despite these dire trends, the situation is changing. Today some of the world’s largest environmental groups are focused on addressing the health of marine life and oceans, while sustainable fisheries management is at the top of the agenda for intergovenmental bodies. At the forefront of these efforts is Mike Sutton, director of the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s conservation program: the Center for the Future of the Oceans. The aquarium, which has long been recognized as one of the world’s most important marine research facilities, is pioneering new strategies for protecting the planet’s oceans. Sutton says the approach has four parts: establishing new marine protected areas, pushing for ocean policy reform, promoting sustainable seafood, and protecting wildlife and marine ecosystems.