If you’re a lover of fish and a regular reader of The9Billion, you probably already know that overfishing is an increasingly large problem around the world. According to Greenpeace, more than 70% of the world’s fisheries are “fully exploited, over exploited, or significantly depleted,” and popular types of fish have gone down in population as much as 90% since the 1950s due to the growth of fish companies and catches.
Obviously, fish consumers can help tackle this issue by not eating so much fish, but if you’re a diehard seafood fan and don’t want to completely cut it out of your diet, you’re in luck. Companies such as Whole Foods are making it much easier to make safe, informed decisions in regard to seafood consumption.
As of Earth Day 2012, Whole Foods Market will remove red-rated wild-caught fish from its shelves, only offering yellow and green-rated seafood products.
Green-rated seafood is obviously the best choice, indicating the species is abundant and caught in an environmentally responsible manner. Yellow is also a decent choice, although it means some concerns exist with the status of the species and/or catch methods. Red-rated seafood should be avoided at all costs, indicating the species is suffering from overfishing and the catching methods harm their habitats or marine life.
Once this change is put into effect, Whole Foods will no longer carry any octopus products, trawl-caught Atlantic cod, swordfish or tuna from specific fisheries, Atlantic gray sole, turbot, sturgeon, Atlantic halibut, rockfish, skate wing, or imported wild shrimp. The company has not sold orange roughy, bluefin tuna, or shark in several years due to sustainability issues.
If you’re bummin’ because your favorite fish is on this list, here is a list of what to avoid and some safer alternatives for cooking seafood.
Have you given up or cut down on fish lately? What are some of your favorite fish products or alternatives to seafood?
Image CC licensed by RealEstateGeezer: Whole Foods Market