Wal-Mart Bows New Label for Sustainable Seafood

BENTONVILLE, Ark. - Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. is making sure its seafood departments get credit for supporting sustainable fisheries. The chain said yesterday it is now featuring the Marine Stewardship Council's (MSC) independent blue eco-label on 10 fish products, including the world's first MSC-labeled surimi products, in its Supercenter and Neighborhood Market locations across the United States.
"The MSC label is an easy way for consumers to identify seafood from fisheries that meet the MSC's strict environmental standard," said Peter Redmond, v.p., Wal-Mart seafood and deli, in a statement. "We have set a goal to procure all wild-caught seafood for North America from fisheries certified by the MSC within the next three to five years, and this is the first step toward that goal. This initiative is part of Wal-Mart's continued commitment to offering sustainable products at affordable prices to our customers."

Rupert Howes, chief executive of MSC, described the launch of the first MSC-labeled products within Wal-Mart Stores as a major milestone. "The range and volume of MSC eco-labeled seafood products on Wal-Mart's shelves are set to increase significantly over the coming years as more suppliers meet our requirements for processing and handling sustainable seafood," said Howes. "Furthermore, Wal-Mart supply fisheries have begun to engage in the early stages of the MSC assessment process."

In February 2006, Wal-Mart pledged to source all of its wild-caught fresh and frozen fish for the North American market from fisheries that meet the MSC's independent environmental standard. The first products to hit Wal-Mart's shelves came from Beaver Street Fisheries and AquaCuisine in April.
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