It's not uncommon to hear David Suzuki say, I am fish. What he means is that humans aren't much different from the living, breathing species that come from the sea. This is a good thing to remember when choosing your food. Enjoying seafood sustainably means acknowledging the animal's unique role in nature, understanding how it got from the water to your plate, and managing how much of it we consume.
Our Top 10 sustainable seafood guide is a great place to start. It helps you find the best sustainable seafood available in your grocery store. This seafood is harvested in a way that protects surrounding sea creatures and the ecosystems they depend on. Plus, these species aren't overfished so we can continue to enjoy them for years to come.
Seafood on Suzuki's top 10 sustainable seafood list is:
- Rated a "best choice" by SeaChoice, which means they are caught or grown in an environmentally sustainable manner that protects ocean and freshwater ecosystems.
- Generally available in the Canadian seafood marketplace.
- A good alternative to similar unsustainable products (e.g., closed containment farmed salmon vs. open net pen farmed salmon, harpoon-caught swordfish vs. longline swordfish).
- Mostly from North America, which provides the majority of the available sustainable seafood products in Canada.
Choosing sustainable seafood is an easy and effective act of consumer power that helps protect our oceans, and sends a strong signal to government and industry leaders that they should do the same. When you do consume seafood, make the most of it by eating sustainably.
Ask for: Sablefish from the Canadian Pacific or Alaska that are trap and bottom longline caught.
Avoid: Trawl caught sablefish, or those caught in California, Oregon or Washington using bottom longline. More »
Ask for: Oysters farmed anywhere worldwide in a suspended culture system.
Avoid: Wild oysters that are caught by scallop dredge or tonging. More »
Ask for: Prawns caught in the Canadian Pacific by trap.
Avoid: Spot prawns caught in the U.S. or other species of prawns such as tiger prawns. More »
Ask for: Sardines from Canadian and U.S. Pacific that are purse seine caught.
Avoid: Sardines from Atlantic U.S. caught by mid-water trawl or purse seine More »
Ask for: Albacore tuna caught by troll/pole from Canadian and US Pacific waters.
Avoid: Albacore tuna caught by pelagic longline. More »
Ask for: Farmed salmon raised with closed containment technology.
Avoid: Farmed salmon raised in open net pens. More »
Ask for: Swordfish from Canada and the U.S. that is harpoon or handline caught.
Avoid: Swordfish harvested with unsustainable gear types like pelagic longline or harpoon/handline, from the Mediterranean, Indian Ocean, International Atlantic or International Pacific regions. More »
Ask for: Clams farmed worldwide, or wild soft shell clams from the U.S. that are handraked. More »
Ask for: Dungeness crab trap caught in Canada, California, Oregon and Washington.
Avoid: Dungeness crab trap caught in Alaska or Atlantic Dungeness crab. More »
Ask for: Cod caught in Alaska by bottom longline, jig or trap.
Avoid: Cod from Atlantic or Pacific waters, other than Alaska. More »