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Sysco Corp. on Monday pledged to strengthen its sustainable seafood sourcing practices, part of multi-tiered partnership with the World Wildlife Fund.

North America’s largest foodservice distributor committed to buy its top 10 Sysco brand wild seafood species — which represent more than half of the brand’s seafood product line — from fisheries that are either certified or under assessment by the Marine Stewardship Council or involved in fishery improvement projects with the WWF. The species include tuna, salmon, cod, pollock, shrimp, scallops, clams, squid, lobster and crab.

Additionally, Sysco agreed to encourage its tuna suppliers to participate in the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation to move toward long-term procurement from sustainable, MSC-certified tuna fisheries. The Houston-based giant also committed to work closely with the WWF on mahimahi and spiny lobster fishery improvement projects in South and Central America.

“Sysco is eager to begin this phase of sustainable work with WWF,” said Craig Watson, Sysco’s VP of agricultural sustainability. “We believe that this level of supply-chain engagement will help with greater efforts to improve the health of the oceans and fisheries that we share.”

Bill Fox, VP and managing director of the WWF’s fisheries program: “As a market leader in seafood, we applaud Sysco’s commitments to adopt more sustainable practices for the benefit of the industry and our planet. Commitments like this are essential if we hope to conserve healthy oceans. We are pleased by Sysco’s visionary approach to improve its impact on the environment and the sustainability of some of their most popular seafood products. This approach is good for the long-term success of Sysco’s business and for our collective futures on the planet.”

Last week, SeafoodSource reported that Sysco Corp. is reminding its seafood suppliers of its commitment to food safety, product quality and economic integrity.

 

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