UK retailer Waitrose has announced that all its branded and private label canned tuna is now 100% responsibly sourced.
The retailer said it will ensure its canned tuna is either certified by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) or pole and line caught. Waitrose said that it worked over the last year with a number of branded tuna suppliers to improve their sustainability credentials.
All Waitrose private label canned tuna has been pole and line caught since 2009 and MSC certified since 2013, while all the tuna in private label ready prepared products such as sandwiches and pâtés is also pole and line caught, according to the retailer.
The MSC is a London-based non-profit that works with partners to encourage sustainable fishing practices. Pole and line tuna is caught with traditional fishing methods, which largely avoid other marine animals like sharks, dolphins and whales being caught up, such as tends to be the case with large nets.
The responsibly sourced tuna commitment coincides with Waitrose's launch of a new range of MSC-certified John West canned tuna, which will be available at its stores for six months.
“Sustainability is at the heart of what we do and we are proud to have such a strong record in ensuring that our own-label tuna is caught in the most responsible way possible,” said Jeremy Ryland-Langley, Waitrose’s aquaculture and fisheries manager. “When they buy a can of own-label tuna, our customers know that they are always buying a product which has been responsibly sourced – and now they have the same assurance when it comes to buying a branded product.”
“It’s great to see Waitrose expand the range of MSC labelled tuna products on sale in their stores with these new John West MSC labelled cans,” said Toby Middleton, MSC’s programme director. “Extending their own sustainable seafood strategy to also apply to the brands they stock shows how seriously Waitrose treat the health of the world’s oceans.”
The UK retailer announced in July that it planned to make all of its 46 private label tea products Fairtrade certified by October.
Waitrose also has been winning awards for its animal welfare efforts in June when it won the Europe-wide Compassion in World Farming (CIWF) 'Best Retailer Award' for the second time.
© 2017 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Kevin Duggan. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.