Albertson’s will ramp up sustainability requirements for its sushi by 2022
Albertsons Companies, which operates more than 2,300 grocery stores in the U.S., is committing to sourcing sustainable seafood for its sushi by the end of 2022.
As part of the retailer’s “Top 5 by 2022” Sushi Commitment in its Responsible Seafood Program, Albertsons will ensure the top five wild and farmed seafood species used for its sushi will meet the company’s Responsible Seafood Policy by the end of 2022.
“Sushi represents a large and growing opportunity for retailers to affect positive change in seafood sustainability,” Lori Dupre, director of retail support for Albertson’s Deli Prepared Food, said. “We’re proud to be a leader and help start this transformation that will maintain the viability of various fish species and their ecosystems.”
Albertson’s Top 5 by 2022 Sushi Commitment was developed in partnership with FishWise, a nonprofit sustainable seafood consultancy.
“Despite being a growing sector in grocery, very few retailers, especially of the size of Albertsons Companies, have included sushi in their sustainability policies,” said Ashley Greenley, director of business engagement at FishWise.
The Top 5 Commitment describes the retailer’s plans to transition tuna, farmed salmon, species of whitefish used for surimi, and farmed shrimp to responsible sources.
Albertsons also pledges to discontinue the sale of eel until sustainable sources become available.
“Not only are wild eel populations in severe decline, but they can’t be bred in captivity and the current situation has led to poaching activities in some regions,” Albertsons said in a statement.
The frequently-used sushi ingredients will meet at least one of three requirements: rated Green (best choice) or Yellow (good alternative) by the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch program; certified to an equivalent environmental standard; or sourced from fisheries or farms making measurable and time-bound improvements.