FishBG.jpgSustainable Seafood Week 12 - 18 March 

Well, the Marine Stewardships Council's Sustainable Seafood Week passed us by (12 - 18 March), but that doesn't mean we shouldn't still be thinking about how the seafood we eat is caught and delivered to our plates.

With Easter fast approaching as well (where has the year gone!), we know fish will be on the dinner menu for many families, so  here's a run-down on the different ways the fish we supply are caught and farmed.

There is an ongoing debate between wild-caught fish and farmed fish. Many will argue that wild caught fish are better for us because their nutritional value is greater, with less contaminants than farmed fish. However the other side of the argument is that farmed fish are generally viewed as more sustainable as they do not deplete the wild population. 

As we become more aware of the toll our consumption has on the environment, discerning shoppers are pushing for fish that is both healthy, and sustainable.

Wild Caught - Fish that are wild-caught, are caught in their natural habitat by fishing boats that may use nets, or other methods to bring in the fish from the ocean. So while wild-caught fish are often touted as the superior fish in terms of flavour - it can be more difficult to identify how the fish are caught, and if the stock is sustainable. Often if the fish are caught in nets - this can cause other fish than the target to be caught and brought in. The process of sorting the fish can take time, and may not ensure the survival of the by-catch. So it pays to do your research.

The fish from Noosa Seafood Market is wild-caught in the waters around Queensland, but also sustainable. They know where it’s from and how it was fished, caught or grown. They work with local fishermen, and they use more varieties from the catches and more of the fish to make our products. Noosa Seafood Market regularly consult with the Fisheries Research and Development Corporation to make sure the species they bring in continue to grow naturally at a sustainable level for fishing. 

The fish coming from Wild South Seafoods is totally managed by Amy Elleway who oversees everything from the catching of the fish to the packaging it arrives in. Traceability and Sustainability are at the heart of this business. We love that you can find out on each and every packet which boat your fish was caught from and how it was caught. Check out a past blog we wrote on the Wild South

Line Caught - also called pole catching, this method uses rods with single lines of fishing reel with a number of hooks along the line. This is a more sustainable form of catching fish in the wild - as it allows fishermen to quickly release unwanted or undersize fish, back into their natural environment with less trauma to the fish. It also helps to ensure catch rates remain at levels that will not deplete the wild populations.

The canned fish we supply from Fish 4 Ever is line caught. Their focus is on using local boats and fishermen to source the most sustainable fish for specific areas of the ocean to ensure the fish will remain plentiful and healthy for future generations. Fish 4 Ever incorporate many organic values into their products and work. Surely a winning combination!

The canned fish by Pan Do Mar is a combination of line caught, and sustainable fisheries - with a focus on the full chain of production being certified and traceable. They also incorporate the principles of organic farming in their process and products - so only the best goes with their fish.

Farmed - The idea of fish farms often conjure images of unclean over crowded tanks. And while some fisheries  prioritise quantity over quality, many are making the shift to a sustainable model.

The salmon we supply you from Regal is King Salmon, which is farmed in the cool waters of Marlborough Sounds, a pristine water way at the northern end of New Zealand's southern island. These fish are farmed in the most natural way - with their lifecycle being replicated as closely as possible. Their feed is closely monitored and is certified GMO and BSE free.
Regal Marlborough King Salmon has achieved the world-leading Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP) certification from The Global Aquaculture Alliance.

In addition, the New Zealand King salmon industry received the Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch Green/Best Choice rating in 2015, the only marine-farmed salmon to achieve this rating. This just goes to show that farmed fish, can be just as good when done with an attitude of conservation and integrity.

Here at Lettuce we work hard to ensure the fish we deliver to you is only sourced from sustainable sources. We also try to find the best companies who also align with our organic values. Our hope is that this will help these businesses and industries flourish and continue to challenge the conventional models.