Tesco has joined the WWF in advocating for a 'Seascape approach' to marine sustainability, which is designed to ensure that marine ecosystems are maintained in an eco-friendly manner.
To begin with, the retailer will adopt the Seascape approach for its tuna sourcing, and has set out a roadmap to transition to ecosystem-based fisheries management by 2030.
Marine biodiversity continues to be at risk from overfishing, with 94% of all fish stocks either overfished or at a maximum sustainable level.
Amongst the species most at risk is tuna, which is integral to the diets of millions of people across the globe.
The new approach will see Tesco work in partnership with its own-brand suppliers from this year onwards, to introduce new due diligence processes within its tuna supply chain.
The initiative is expected to help Tesco achieve its goal of 100% MSC-certification across its tuna offering by 2025.
The supermarket will also continue to support Fishery Improvement Projects (FIPs), which include initiatives that aim to help fisheries work towards MSC certification.
Tesco will work with partners like the WWF, as well as its suppliers, to encourage the industry-wide adoption of the SSB40 metric to report on the health of fish stocks.
This metric allows the retailer and its suppliers to know if their fish is being sourced from a marine environment where breeding fish comprises at least 40% of the original population.
The new approach sees Tesco align itself with the Global Tuna Alliance (GTA) guidelines and the NGO Tuna Forum, and existing certifications and ratings from trusted bodies such as the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) and the Marine Conservation Society's Good Fish Guide.
Ashwin Prasad, chief product officer at Tesco, hopes that "this new approach to tuna sourcing, developed in partnership with the WWF, will play a critical role in regenerating tuna stocks, while maintaining whole marine ecosystems for future generations."
Tesco is working in partnership with the WWF to halve the environmental impact of the average UK shopping basket, with this new approach to marine sustainability set to accelerate that process.
© 2021 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Conor Farrelly. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.