New Follow the Fish movement demands sustainability information for all seafood products

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Irene Campmany | email: | tel.: +34 682 622 245

The Follow the Fish movement, initiated by Oceana, urges the EU to introduce a mandatory sustainability ranking on all seafood products

Currently, there is a lack of information on many fish products, including the exact species and if these products come from overfished stocks

The new Follow the Fish movement, initiated by Oceana, urges the EU to require full transparency for all seafood sold on the EU market, including processed and imported products. The movement brings together a variety of key players that have a connection with the ocean, such as chefs, restaurants, seafood businesses, wholesalers, think tanks, and NGOs to ensure that there is mandatory sustainability information on all seafood products. To achieve this, members of the movement handed over a joint statement to the EU Commission.

Marine Cusa, Policy Advisor at Oceana in Europe, highlighted that currently, EU consumers cannot always know whether the seafood they buy is sustainable and where many products come from. Creating a mandatory sustainability ranking for all EU seafood products, irrespective of whether they are sold fresh or processed, and whether they were caught in or outside EU waters, would be a real game changer.

Irene Kranendonk, Impact Manager at Fish Tales, a member of the movement, states that without mandatory traceability of all seafood products, Europe enables unsustainable and illegal seafood to enter the market and makes it impossible for consumers, fishmongers, and retailers to guarantee that a product has been produced in a responsible manner. It is high time that we take responsibility and act to make the fishing industry more sustainable.

The Follow the Fish movement asks the EU Commission to develop a mandatory EU-wide sustainability ranking for all seafood products, including processed and imported fish. This would inform consumers, businesses, and restaurants about the product’s sustainability and incentivise players in the seafood industry to improve their traceability system. 

The Follow the Fish movement is launched a day after the International Day for the Fight Against Illegal Fishing and ahead of the proposal for a new EU law that aims to improve food sustainability this autumn, the Framework for Sustainable Food Systems.

Note to editors:

  • The European Commission is currently working on a proposal on how best to provide EU consumers with information on the environmental and social sustainability of all food items, including seafood. There are several options on the table, ranging from reinforcing existing guidelines to creating a new framework for sustainability information, with either a mandatory or voluntary EU-wide system. 
  • Read the Follow the Fish statement
  • Read more about the Follow the Fish movement
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