Whole Foods Market’s 365 Everyday Value® canned tuna earned green ranking in 2017 Greenpeace Canned Tuna Shopping Guide

Whole Foods Market’s 365 Everyday Value® canned tuna earned green ranking in 2017 Greenpeace Canned Tuna Shopping Guide

Retailer recognized for strict purchasing policies, transparency and commitment to one-by-one catch methods

AUSTIN, Texas, 2017-Apr-21 — /EPR Retail News/ — In the 2017 Greenpeace Canned Tuna Shopping Guide, Whole Foods Market’s 365 Everyday Value® canned tuna earned a green ranking, identified as a best choice for consumers. Whole Foods Market is the only retailer whose private label brand earned a top score, and the company was named as an industry leader for its new storewide canned tuna sourcing policy.

The Greenpeace ranking evaluated the practices of 20 brands, including whether the fishing method used to catch tuna harms other marine life, whether brands avoid shark finning, and whether they can trace their products back to the source. In addition, Greenpeace examined the equitability and social responsibility of tuna brands.

Greenpeace recognized Whole Foods Market as the first and only retailer to require all canned tuna sold in stores to be caught using pole-and-line, troll, or handline catch methods, which catch fish one at a time, limiting catches, preventing bycatch and supporting livelihoods in coastal communities.

“We have created our own standards for canned tuna at Whole Foods Market to address overfishing and bycatch issues that are common in conventional tuna fisheries,” said Carrie Brownstein, Whole Foods Market’s global seafood quality standards coordinator. “Shifting purchases to sustainable options and having strong traceability to verify our sourcing will have a positive impact on our oceans and the fishing communities who depend on these tuna fisheries to support their livelihoods. Earning another top ranking from Greenpeace is an honor and we hope it inspires others in the industry to take further steps towards greater sustainability.”

In addition to the one-by-one catch methods, Whole Foods Market’s new canned tuna sourcing policy ensures fisheries are certified sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council or rated green or yellow by the Monterey Bay Aquarium and The Safina Center. Every supplier must also use Trace Register, traceability software that tracks each lot of tuna at every point from vessel to can. The traceability data are continuously crosschecked to help verify sourcing and prevent illegally-caught or unauthorized fish from entering the supply chain.

“This commitment from Whole Foods Market sets the bar for other retailers to follow,” said David Pinsky, author of Greenpeace’s canned Tuna Shopping Guide. “Whole Foods Market requires catch methods that benefit small-scale fisheries and significantly reduce the likelihood of human rights violations. It’s great to see this policy extend to the prepared foods department, as well as all the brands on store shelves, driving additional change beyond the company’s private label canned tuna.”

Ranked third overall, 365 Everyday Value® joins the two brands tied for the top ranking – American Tuna and Wild Planet – on Whole Foods Market shelves, contributing to the retailer’s largest selection of sustainable, responsibly-sourced canned tuna. In the 2016 report, Greenpeace identified Whole Foods Market’s selection of canned tuna as the best of any major U.S. retailer.

These continual advancements in policies and sourcing are part of Whole Foods Market’s mission to create a model that moves the seafood industry toward greater sustainability.

SOURCE: Whole Foods Market

PRESS CONTACT:
SOmedia@wholefoods.com

Whole Foods Market commits to rigorous sustainability and traceability requirements for all canned tuna sold in its grocery aisle

Company is first national retailer to create storewide requirements spanning grocery products and prepared foods items

AUSTIN, Texas, 2017-Mar-17 — /EPR Retail News/ — By January 2018, all canned tuna sold at Whole Foods Market will meet rigorous sustainability and traceability requirements that aim to reduce overfishing and bycatch, and support fishing communities. The new sourcing policy includes canned tuna items sold in the grocery aisle as well as the prepared foods department. Whole Foods Market is the first national retailer to create such stringent standards for canned tuna, which is among the three most consumed seafood items in the United States.

Under the new policy, all canned tuna at Whole Foods Market must come from fisheries using only pole-and-line, troll, or handline catch methods, all of which take fish one by one, preventing bycatch and creating more jobs in coastal communities. These fisheries must either be certified sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council or rated green or yellow by the Monterey Bay Aquarium and The Safina Center.

Every supplier must also use Trace Register, traceability software that tracks each lot of tuna at every point from vessel to can. The traceability data are continuously crosschecked to help verify sourcing and prevent illegally caught or unauthorized fish from entering the supply chain.

“We created this new policy for canned tuna because we want to lead by example in sourcing only the highest quality, sustainably caught tuna,” said Carrie Brownstein, global seafood quality standards coordinator for Whole Foods Market. “Combined with better international fishery management, overfishing and bycatch can be greatly reduced when tuna is caught by these low-impact fishing methods. We are honored to be working with suppliers and partners who are driving positive change.”

Leading brands that already source canned tuna from one-by-one fisheries, including 365 Everyday Value®, American Tuna, Pole and Line, Henry and Lisa’s, and Wild Planet, are updating their operations to meet the policy’s traceability requirements. These measures will also help importers get ahead of the traceability provisions in NOAA’s Seafood Import Monitoring Program, which has a deadline for mandatory compliance by Jan. 1, 2018.

Over the coming months, remaining suppliers will shift their operations and fishing practices to use the approved one-by-one catch methods, which are more environmentally friendly and offer more employment opportunities for fishermen worldwide.

“Since America is the largest canned tuna market in the world, shifts toward greater sustainability in this category can create a meaningful, positive impact on our oceans and our global fishing communities,” said Adam Baske, director of policy and outreach for International Pole and Line Foundation. “In some cases, these one-by-one fisheries are one of very few sources of local employment. The boats also make relatively short trips, enabling crews to return home frequently, compared to large industrial tuna vessels that may spend multiple months or even years at sea.”

Whole Foods Market’s new canned tuna policy expands on the retailer’s existing sustainability standards for fresh and frozen seafood, which also require that all seafood must either be certified sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council or rated green or yellow by the Monterey Bay Aquarium and The Safina Center. Additionally, all of the retailer’s farmed seafood must meet its industry-leading aquaculture standards, which include third-party on-site audits.

In 2016, Whole Foods Market introduced the retailer’s first Fair Trade certified yellowfin tuna, a designation which ensures better wages and working conditions for fishermen, and provides additional funding to their communities for improvement projects and investments. Fair Trade certification also verifies full supply chain traceability.

These continual advancements in policies and sourcing are part of Whole Foods Market’s mission to create a model that moves the seafood industry toward greater sustainability.

Press Contacts:

Darrah Gist
darrah.gist@wholefoods.com
678.638.5888

Lauren Bernath
lauren.bernath@wholefoods.com
678.638.5805

SOURCE: Whole Foods Market