Frequently asked questions
What is sustainable seafood?
Sustainable seafood can be wild-caught or farmed / aquaculture. For wild-caught fish, sustainable seafood is sourced from abundant fish stocks, using methods that do not damage ocean habitats or catch large volumes of non-target species (by-catch) and have responsive management systems in place. Sustainable farmed seafood is grown in aquaculture systems that do not destroy habitat or depend on overfished wild-caught fisheries as feed. There are lots of certifications out there, but what do they mean? Here’s a guide to the two of the most commonly used.
What is MSC/Marine Stewardship Council?
MSC is the world’s leading independent certification and eco-labelling scheme for wild-caught seafood. To achieve MSC certification, fisheries must demonstrate - through a rigorous, independent assessment process – that the stocks being targeted are healthy, the fishing practices have minimal impact on the marine eco-system and overall the fishery is well managed.
What is ASC/Aquaculture Stewardship Council?
The ASC is the world's leading certification and labelling programme for responsibly farmed seafood. The ASC label standards include preservation of the natural environment and biodiversity, responsible use of animal feed and preservation of wild populations. This label will help you to identify sustainable seafood products sourced from fish or shellfish farms.
What is Pole and Line?
Tuna fishing is a big business! Tuna is the world’s most popular fish. Some methods used to catch the fish can have a significant impact on the health of our oceans. Currently, most tuna is caught using large-scale industrial fishing methods which includes, fish aggregating devices or FADs. These methods can increase the amount of by-catch or non target tuna species caught, therefore, impacting marine life such as sharks and turtles. Pole and line fishing is where fish are caught one at a time by hand using a hook and line attached to a long pole. It therefore lessens the likelihood of by-catch.
What do I do if...
My seafood monger or supermarket doesn’t have MSC or ASC labelled products?
Firstly, you should always ask where you seafood comes from; any good retailer should be able to tell you what they are selling you. Ask your seafood retailer to stock MSC or ASC.
I can’t find an MSC or ASC labelled product for the fish I need for a recipe?
MSC or ASC is the highest certification that you can aim when it comes to sustainable seafood. For those occasions where you can’t find the eco-labels, buy locally sourced seafood, fresh not frozen, and support Australian fisheries.