Supermarket Chain Implements Sustainable Seafood Policy

May 30, 2012

Hannaford Supermarkets has become the first major supermarket chain in the country to implement a policy to only sell seafood products that are proven to be sustainably harvested.

Whether you’re buying a can of tuna fish, a package of frozen fish sticks or fresh salmon, Hannaford Supermarket will know the specific fishery it was harvested from and whether it was done sustainably. The company has adopted a policy covering all its seafood, including fresh, frozen, canned and packaged requiring that the product is harvested in a sustainable manner. Hannaford Sustainability Manager George Parmenter says they began working on the policy several years ago following the United Nations’ caution that the world’s fisheries were overfished and effective management was needed.

George Parmenter says crafting the policy was difficult and complex.

Hannaford’s seafood sustainability policy was developed with the help of the Gulf of Maine Research Institute.  Sustainable Seafood Program Manager Jen Levin calls Hannaford’s approach to seafood sourcing ground breaking.

The supermarket chain has replaced more than 50 products with sustainably harvested varieties because suppliers could not prove that the seafood had been responsibly harvested. Hannaford operates 181 stores in Maine, New York, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont.