Majority of US fisheries earn ‘best choice’ ratings

By

SeafoodSource staff

Published on
October 8, 2013

Of the 242 U.S. fishery species assessed by the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch program, 78 percent of commercial landings have earned a green (Best Choice) and 17 percent a yellow (Good Alternative) rating.

Only 5 percent of U.S. fisheries have been given an "Avoid" rating.

Seafood Watch recently upgraded U.S.-caught red snapper in the Gulf of Mexico to a “Good Alternative” recommendation because sound management has helped once-depleted populations recover. Trap-caught black sea bass from the South Atlantic was also upgraded to a “Best Choice” recommendation.

Wild-caught shrimp from the Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic remain a “Good Alternative,” except when gear has not been modified to protect sea turtles and other species accidentally caught in shrimp nets, as mandated in federal waters.

However, all shrimp caught in Louisiana or caught by skimmer trawl is now on the Seafood Watch “Avoid” list because of critical conservation threats to sea turtles.

“Seafood Watch assesses wild-caught and farmed seafood based on peer-reviewed science reports and fully transparent criteria that we publish on the Monterey Bay Aquarium website,” said Jennifer Dianto Kemmerly, Seafood Watch director. “If there’s a change in Louisiana’s management of its shrimp fishery to address the critical conservation concern around sea turtles, we can quickly revisit our recommendations to reflect that change.”

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