Posted on July 21, 2011 - by

Smart Phones Helping Us Make Smart Seafood Decisions

Today’s guest blog post is brought to you by FishWise, a non-profit sustainable seafood consultancy that helps seafood businesses improve the sustainability of their seafood offerings.

Let’s face it–choosing sustainable seafood can be difficult. The sustainability of a particular species depends not only on the inherent vulnerability of the species itself, but also on where and how it was caught.

To figure this out, there are apps that place extensive information at our fingertips and conveniently guide our responsible seafood choices. Nowadays, living in a wireless world, the Seafood Watch app for iPhone and Android has replaced the Seafood Watch card in our wallet provided by the Monterey Bay Aquarium. The Blue Ocean Institute also has its FishPhone app in addition to their printed guides.

For some consumers, knowing the location and method of catch is not enough! They want to be able to trace their fish back to the source. Some of you can visit local fish markets that generally work very closely with the fishermen themselves, however, most seafood buyers rely on their local grocery store for their seafood needs. Even for experts who work in the seafood industry, tracing seafood back to the source is challenging since the seafood supply chain can be extremely complex.

To go one step further, there are now companies who allow consumers to go online and trace the product back to the source by entering a code on the package in their hands.

Partnering with Trace Register™ – the global food traceability company, Kwik’pak Fisheries has developed a tool that allows consumers to trace their Yukon River Salmon back to the source. We can go to their “Trace Your Fish” web page and enter this example code: 103104. We are then presented with information about the product’s nutritional value, the name of the Yupik fishermen who caught it, how they caught and processed the fish, a map showing the catch location and even healthy recipes to try out.

Some Northern Chef farmed raised shrimp carried by Tai Foong are yellow ranked by the Monterey Bay as well as being traceable. Try this code: 877971002797 and enter it in their Dine Well Shrimp page where we can learn the details about their aquaculture practices, their shrimp quality, and their location in Thailand on the map.

These companies are at the frontier of traceability and others are guaranteed to follow suit, which is great news for consumers like you. The more information you have at your fingertips when choosing seafood, the better the choices you can make for yourself and the environment.

FishWise is a non-profit sustainable seafood consultancy that helps seafood businesses improve the sustainability of their seafood offerings through environmentally responsible business practices, such as policy development, employee training, sourcing assistance and point of sale information. This approach empowers consumer to make environmentally informed choices when purchasing seafood.

To learn more about sustainable seafood, visit www.fishwise.org or sign up for their mailing list.

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4 Comments

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  1. Visit My Website

    July 21, 2011

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    Klink said:

    I love the Kwik pak story. The technology is there. We all need to start asking for this and giving preference to the brands proud enough to share the details. I think there may be hope for us yet!



  2. Visit My Website

    July 22, 2011

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    Nancy said:

    Great! Traceability – What we need know what exact products we are eating. I like Kwik pak story about this. Information of products is in our hands.



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    July 22, 2011

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    Alan said:

    The Canadian government is privatizing BC’s salmon fishery and encouraging corporate concentration. I am hoping that FishWise and Traceregister can help consumers know if they are buying from owner-operator fishermen as opposed to the large corporation. Sustainable fisheries require sustainable fishermen.



  4. Visit My Website

    July 25, 2011

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    Robert said:

    Better example of what Kwik’Pak has done, use the traceability code 101115.

    Kwik’Pak and all of the Yupik people are wonderful examples of what can be done and how you should question where your seafood really comes from.