Why eat sustainable fish?
Because seafood is an important part of our diet and provides us with proteins, essential fatty oils, and vitamins and minerals necessary for a healthy lifestyle.
Because by managing our resources properly to let fish stocks recover and prosper, we can enjoy the benefits fish offer us now, and let our children enjoy them tomorrow.
Because we know that the market reacts to our individual and collective choices as consumers.
Because if we want things to change we must all inform ourselves better about the many different sustainable options; if we make smarter choices in the way we choose our food, we can have a real impact.
Because if we don't act, our seas, our fishermen's nets, and even our plates will soon be empty.
How can I eat sustainable fish?
There are hundreds of edible fish, crustacean and mollusc species. As consumers we should try to choose the ones that are not at risk.
Often changing what you eat can involve a simple swap, such as choosing North Sea plaice, saithe or haddock over cod, trying an aquaculture product such as rainbow trout or pikeperch, or even farmed sole or cod. Southern horse mackerel is an undervalued fish species, and North Sea herring a well-managed stock, and as such, they are perfectly acceptable, sustainable choices to eat.
It could also mean choosing a lesser-known species, such as a megrim, which tastes just as good as your traditional fish, and is also often much cheaper. Use creativity in your kitchen, invent new recipes, or even rediscover some of your grandparents’ favorites.
Size really does matter for some species. For such cases the EU has introduced minimum sizes and/or legal fishing periods to ensure the fish on your plate has had the time to reproduce.
If you are in a restaurant, ask about where the fish comes from, how it was produced and if it was fished sustainably. Ask the chef about their approach to sustainable fish. Your local fishmonger is another seafood expert, why not have the same conversations with them?
There is a whole world of new seafood awaiting discovery, so explore the information from your country and take the plunge.