Wholesaler now offering sustainable farmed prawns, pangasius to 50,000 consumers
New prawn products certified by the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) have been introduced to the United Kingdom courtesy of the Brakes Group, a foodservice supplier.
The ASC-certified prawn offerings (F114100 M&J Seafood ASC King Prawns, 1 kg net (31-40/lb)) were launched at the end of March, and serve to “compliment [an]…already industry leading range of sustainably and responsibly sourced fish and seafood,” according to ASC. A variety of pubs, hotels, restaurants, schools and hospitals throughout the U.K. will now have access to prawns and basa sourced from sustainably managed farms because of the Brakes' certification.
In May 2015, Brakes established itself as the first national wholesale foodservice supplier to sign the Sustainable Fish City pledge, which entails a company committing to obtaining fish and seafood only from demonstrably sustainable sources for its own brand and general sale range by May 2016.
“We want to be seen as market leaders in the provision of sustainably and responsibly sourced fish and seafood, driving the foodservice market in the right direction and the introduction of ASC-certified products into our product range will help us to do this,” said Andrew Crawford, fish and seafood category manager for Brakes. “We are proud to offer the biggest range of sustainable fish and seafood in the U.K. and we also work closely with our customers to help them meet their own commitments. Ultimately, sourcing sustainably and responsibly is the right thing to do.”
In an additional testament to its commitment to seafood sustainability, Brakes introduced three lines of ASC-certified pangasius Basa to its product offerings being rolled out in April 2016.
“We are gradually tailoring our range to fulfil our commitment and the new ASC certified shrimp and pangasius will help in this process. We have a long history of sustainable fish and seafood initiatives and accomplishments, and looking at our farmed range is the next logical step,” Crawford said.
“It’s a significant moment to have the first ASC-certified prawns in U.K. foodservice now available. The commitment by Brakes to offer not only shrimp, but also ASC-certified Basa, is a strong example that responsible aquaculture is good for business,” Esther Luiten, senior commercial marketing manager for ASC, said. “By choosing ASC certified species, Brakes is supporting farms that protect the environment while offering their customers a responsible choice.”
Institutions that provide ASC-certified products from Brakes are eligible to apply for an ASC Chain of Custody Certification, which could eventually allow for the use of the consumer-facing logo.
The ASC-certified prawns are sourced from the Vietnamese shrimp farm, Quoc Viet. A family run business, the farm became the first Asian shrimp outfit to gain ASC certification following independent assessment against the ASC shrimp standard.