American Tuna’s MSC pole & line tuna gets exclusive deal


SeafoodSource staff

Published on
May 21, 2014

American Tuna announced the launch of Pole & Line Tuna and Deck Hand Premium Cat Food, both available exclusively at Whole Foods Market locations nationwide starting this spring.

All Pole & Line and Deck Hand tuna are caught by artisanal fishermen using the pole and line method. In addition, every can of tuna can be traced to its source. Pole & Line Albacore, caught off the U.S. Pacific Coast by U.S. fishermen, is traceable to a specific vessel and boat captain, while Pole & Line Skipjack (caught in the Maldives, Indian Ocean) and Deck Hand Premium Cat Food can be traced to a specific batch.

All fish are harvested in two Marine Stewardship Council-certified fisheries: the MSC certified U.S. pole and line albacore fishery and the MSC certified Maldivian pole and line fishery.

“Our partnership with Whole Foods Market is helping fishing families keep a century-old tradition of sustainable, small-scale fishing alive,” said Natalie Webster, a member of one of the founding families at American Tuna. “On the U.S. Pacific Coast, our sustainable approach supports the livelihood of artisanal U.S. fishermen, while in the Indian Ocean, our partnership with Maldivian fishermen supports their local economy. Pole & Line and Deck Hand brands enhance the economic opportunities and well-being of fishing families, sustainable fisheries and coastal communities.”

The pole and line method also eliminates the longline and purse seine methods, employed by most commercial fishing fleets, often resulting in the indiscriminate harvest of other species.

“Every aspect of pole and line, from sustainability to nutrition to traceability, has been carefully thought through,” said Dwight Richmond, global grocery purchasing coordinator for Whole Foods Market. “These products bring true innovation to the tuna category with an end result of higher quality for consumers at a great low price.”

Each 5-ounce can of Pole & Line contains a solid tuna steak that has been hand-filleted and cooked. Pole & Line comes in five varieties including Albacore No Salt Added, Albacore With Salt, Albacore in Olive Oil, Skipjack No Salt Added, Skipjack With Salt.

Deck Hand Premium Cat Food is available in a 5-ounce can and in a sleeve containing three 3-ounce cans. Deck Hand contains the same fish as Pole & Line, the only difference being the use of tuna red meat for the cat food (vs. white meat in Pole & Line). Both lines are made without fillers or additives (the salt and olive oil used in three varieties are for flavor only). Any remaining parts become fish and bone meal for animal feed so no food waste is generated.

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