Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op Recognized for Sustainable Seafood

I received this press release this week, and thought it was very newsworthy (especially because tomorrow is Earth Day), so I am sharing it with all of you. 

Now more than ever, I am becoming very strict about the meat and vegetables I buy and consume. I am only buying organic, grass-fed meats, staying away from soy, and buying organic fruits and vegetables whenever possible. This also translates into responsible buying of seafood. I won't start preaching because you are probably sick to death of hearing all the buzzwords: local, sustainable, organic, grass-fed, cage-free. So, without further adieu, here is the positive news/press release:

Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op was recognized as one of the most sustainable seafood retailers in the USA, according to Greenpeace's updated seafood sustainability scorecard 'Carting Away the Oceans', which was released on this week.

The Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op is proud to be the top-ranked store in California for its commitment to sustainable seafood. The Co-op provides the best options to customers and offers them help making good choices for their own health and the health of our oceans. The Co-op’s support of policy initiatives such as the creation of marine reserves and establishing caps on bycatch has helped to bring sustainable seafood issues to national prominence.

Robert Duncan, Seafood Manager, Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op says the purpose of the Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op has always been “to be a trusted source of natural foods and products, and a reliable resource for consumer information as well as modeling sustainable environmental practices in our business.”

Seafood purchasing is one part of the Co-op’s commitment to sustainable practices. This involves partnering with FishWise, a non-profit organization focused on improving the sustainability of seafood retailers. The Co-op has partnered with FishWise since 2005, and through this collaboration has been able to implement a comprehensive sustainable seafood policy that includes training staff, providing customers with point-of-sale information, sourcing responsibly and supporting fishery and aquaculture reform.

The Co-op and FishWise work with the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch program and follow its recommendations and ranking system. Seafood Watch ranks seafood as Green “Best Choice”, Yellow “Good Alternative” or Red “Avoid”. Since the launch of its partnership with FishWise, the Co-op’s seafood department has stopped purchasing Red-ranked items completely.

The Sacramento Natural Foods Co-op scored 9.1 out of 10, compared to Whole Foods, which scored 6.2 and Trader Joes, which scored 4.5. To view all of the stores rated by Greenpeace, go here.

About FishWise
FishWise is a non-profit organization based in Santa Cruz, CA. Uniquely positioned between the seafood industry and marine conservation organizations, FishWise offers a range of services that create trust between seafood vendors and their customers, enabling businesses to sell more sustainable seafood. For more information please visit www.fishwise.org

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