SUSTAINABLE SEAFOOD

admin | Food & Beverages | 15 Feb 2020 01:07:57

Sustainable Seafood

 Sustainable seafood is the seafood that gets to our plates with minimal impact of fish population and marine environment. It can be farmed in aqua-culture or wild caught fish. Only a few fisheries are certified sustainable throughout the world. You can help sustainable seafood by choosing fast growing and small species and avoid fish such as swordfish, sharks and tuna.

Significant Diet

Seafood forms a significant part of the Australian diet. Australians consume around 15 kg of seafood per person every year and the appetite is growing. Australian seafood comes from a variety of sources, with around 65% of the seafood are imported from overseas. Fisheries production in Australian wild capture fisheries peaked at 246,000 tonnes in 2003-04. Since then we’ve had declining catches due to a combination of factors. Decreased fishing effort declines in certain fish stocks and changing market conditions. In the year 2016-17, Australian fisheries landed 166,022 tonnes of seafood from our oceans. Aquaculture production has continued to increase over recent years, doubling in the past decade.

Better Choices

Seafood forms a significant part of the Australian diet. Australians consume around 15 kg of seafood per person every year and the appetite is growing. Australian seafood comes from a variety of sources, with around 65% of the seafood are imported from overseas. Fisheries production in Australian wild capture fisheries peaked at 246,000 tonnes in 2003-04. Since then we’ve had declining catches due to a combination of factors. Decreased fishing effort declines in certain fish stocks and changing market conditions. In the year 2016-17, Australian fisheries landed 166,022 tonnes of seafood from our oceans. Aquaculture production has continued to increase over recent years, doubling in the past decade.

Australian Wild Caught Seafood

Australian salmon and Whiting are wild caught throughout Australia. Flathead is a better choice in NSW and Victoria waters for wild caught fish. Blue-eye trevalla in Western Australia and Northern Territory. This also includes mud crabs, spanner crabs, Southern calamari and prawns.

Australian sardines are by far the biggest wild-caught fish. However, they are mainly used to make feed for farmed fish such as southern bluefin tuna. Prawns and rock lobster are our next biggest fisheries. Of the fish caught in our waters and predominantly eaten in Australia, the largest catches are of shark, mullet and flathead.

Farmed Seafood

Barramundi heads the list for farmed fish. Followed by oysters, blue mussels and prawns. This includes kuruma, banana and black tiger prawns.

A number of other fish are farmed. These include rainbow trout, southern bluefin tuna and barramundi. Atlantic salmon is also farmed in Australia and marketed as Tasmanian smoked salmon. Several shellfish are also grown in Australian aquaculture, notably oysters, mussels and prawns.

You can help sustainable seafood by eating less of farmed fish. However, wild-caught species in this group may be caught using fishing methods that cause some damage to marine habitats. It could also be associated with significant levels of bycatch.

Overfished

Wild caught species in this group, blue warehou that is marketed as sea bream, gemfish or hake, jewfish, deep sea perch, pink snapper and shark that is market as flake should be minimised. Whether Australian or imported, they may be overfished, or their capture heavily impacts our seas. For example, killing threatened or protected species as bycatch or damaging sensitive habitats. Farmed species include those produced by methods that place much stress on our oceans.

Seafood at the Supermarket

The ‘dolphin friendly’ on most cans, especially tuna are not a measure of sustainable fishing. Dolphin friendly seafood is caught to minimise the number of dolphins killed. However, they may still catch species such as shark or turtles.

The ‘dolphin friendly’ logo does not give any indication of overfishing. Although some companies try to do the right thing. There is no independent regulation of the use of dolphin friendly labels.

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