Expanding on the partnership it began with World Wildlife Fund in early 2010, Minneapolis-based Supervalu Inc. will source 100 percent of its top-20 wild-caught seafood products from sustainable fisheries or those on a clear pathway to sustainability by 2015.
Specifically, these products will be certified from Marine Stewardship Council fisheries, in full assessment, or involved in a fishery improvement project with the World Wildlife Fund by 2015.
Supervalu has been working with WWF for more than a year to assess its current seafood supply and develop ways to improve the sustainability of its seafood buying practices and standards. The results of this recently completed analysis suggest more than 40 percent of the top 20 wild-caught seafood species sold by Supervalu are already certified by MSC or in full assessment.
“Supervalu is excited to announce the next steps toward meeting our company’s commitment to seafood sustainability,” said Chris Hooks, Supervalu’s VP of meat, seafood, dairy and frozen foods. “By sourcing our products from sustainable fisheries, as well as supporting fishery improvement projects, we are helping ensure sustainable seafood for generations to come.”
Supervalu also will continue to support positive change in the oceans by working with the Food Marketing Institute’s Sustainable Seafood Working Group, as well as WWF’s Aquaculture Dialogues, which are currently creating standards for eight species of farmed fish.
Additionally, Supervalu will be supporting Fishery Improvement Projects in cooperation with WWF, including the Indonesian yellow-fin tuna fisheries. The improvements being put in place will directly help these fisheries perform at a level consistent with MSC standards, benefiting local communities, as well as fishermen, suppliers and consumers.
“Fisheries around the world are suffering from unsustainable fishing practices,” said Bill Fox, VP and managing director of WWF’s fisheries program. “That’s why WWF commends Supervalu for voluntarily working with the seafood industry to source MSC certified fish that inherently protects one of the planet’s most popular and healthy forms of protein.”
Supervalu Inc. operates 4,294 stores composed of 1,114 traditional retail stores, including 805 in-store pharmacies; 1,280 hard-discount stores, of which 899 are operated by licensee owners; and 1,900 independent stores serviced primarily by the company’s traditional food distribution business.