(NC) It’s no secret that we Canadians love our seafood — and we’re rich in options, with everything from Pacific salmon to Atlantic oysters to Arctic char. But the demand for seafood globally is higher than it’s ever been before. As a result, overfishing has become the greatest threat our oceans, lakes, and rivers, face today. This is why it’s so important that we’re careful to select sustainable seafood that we ensure there’s plenty of fish for future generations.
Fortunately, joining the sustainable seafood movement is easy — simply look for the Ocean Wise symbol the next time you’re at your local grocery store or fishmonger. This Canadian sustainable seafood program was created in 2005 by the Vancouver Aquarium in response to overfishing concerns.
Ocean Wise makes it easy for consumers across the country to choose ocean-friendly seafood. The program partners with restaurants, retailers, and suppliers to offer seafood lovers sustainable options. To make a recommendation for wild capture assessments, Ocean Wise uses four criteria — impacts of the fishery on the stock in question, impacts of the fishery on other species, effectiveness of management, and impacts on habitat and ecosystem.
There’s often a misconception that farmed seafood is bad, but that’s not necessarily the case. Closed-containment farms are a viable way to farm seafood with minimal or no impact on the surrounding areas, meaning there’s a limited chance of disease transfer, animals can’t escape, and there’s no risk to other animals interacting with nets. Many Ocean Wise partners use this economically and environmentally feasible option to raise their product. The recommendations are wide-ranging, from sturgeon to oysters.
Feel good about the seafood you consume, as this program’s symbol is an assurance that you’re making an ocean-friendly choice.