March 25, 2013

Aldi Australia to evaluate seafood sustainability



Aldi Australia will be collaborating with Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP) on evaluating the sustainability of its series of seafood products.


This new partnership will allow Aldi and SFP together to create programmes and strategies that will guarantee the sustainability of the grocer's supply chain and meet its commitment to source sustainably wild-caught or farmed seafood.


"As a leading retailer we take our corporate responsibility seriously. We are committed to offering a range of sustainable food choices to our customers across all applicable categories, including our seafood range," said an Aldi Australia spokesperson.


This grocer was the first Australian retailer to launch a Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified albacore tuna product back in January 2010 and in August 2012 it introduced a new fish buying policy.


Aldi's project right now is moving towards having all wild-caught fish sourced through sustainable and equitable methods by 2016, for which Aldi will trace its entire canned tuna range throughout the supply chain, or from boat to plate. By next year, each canned tuna product will have the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) catchment area printed on its lid so buyers can read exactly where the tuna was caught.


By 2016, Aldi's entire canned tuna range will come from a combination of pole and line caught and FAD-free fishing sources.


"This initiative is designed to ensure that the products we offer to our customers are derived from sustainable fisheries and aquaculture sources," added the Aldi Australia spokesperson.


Greenpeace is attributing Aldi's change of heart to consumer demand together with its campaign against John West, the biggest tuna brand in Australia, after which every major supermarket that had not already vowed to catch its tuna responsibly -- including Aldi -- followed within weeks. More than 50,000 Australians have sent messages to tuna companies asking them to eschew destructive fishing methods since October 2012.


Dick Jones, Director of Buyer Engagement for the SFP, noted that Aldi Australia is providing a positive example for other retailers to follow in its footsteps.

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