Ranking fails all Canadian supermarkets on supporting sustainable seafood



    MONTREAL, May 22 /CNW Telbec/ - A new Greenpeace report shows that
Canada's major supermarket chains are failing to provide Canadians with
seafood that is sustainably caught and farmed.
    The report, Out of Stock, Out of Excuses: Ranking retailers on seafood
sustainability shows that some retailers have made progress on providing
sustainable seafood while others are ignoring the problem. More must be done
to protect the world's oceans and fish stocks.
    The report ranks the major chains on seven criteria, including: the
quality of their seafood policies, the level of information they provide on
how and where the seafood they sell is caught or farmed, and the number of
Redlist species they sell. Greenpeace released the report in Montreal at a
news conference today.
    "Our analysis shows that major supermarket chains are still part of the
problem of destroying our oceans and destroying seafood," said Beth Hunter,
Greenpeace oceans campaign coordinator. "Some chains have taken steps in the
right direction, but all need to take bigger strides to ensure there will be
fish in the future. Supermarkets are selling out our oceans and selling
themselves out of stock."
    Greenpeace's report gives the chains the following grades (out of 10):
Loblaw 2.4; Sobeys 1.1; Walmart 1.0; Overwaitea 0.9; Federated Co-Operatives
0.9; Costco 0.7; Safeway 0.3; and Metro 0.1.
    To underline the importance of protecting seafood stocks, Greenpeace will
confront grocery stores in 19 cities in five provinces over the next few
weeks. Greenpeace will bring the message to store managers and customers that
Canadian supermarket chains must move quickly to implement sustainable seafood
policies.
    In the first supermarket report-Out of Stock: Supermarkets and the future
of seafood-released last year, Greenpeace identified a Redlist of 15 species
of seafood that are harvested by the most harmful fishing and farming
practices. The report challenged supermarkets to protect the oceans by ending
the sale of Redlist species and adopting strong policies.
    Since last year's report the situation in the oceans has worsened. For
example, scientists have determined that one of Canada's Atlantic cod stocks
off western Newfoundland will never recover and other stocks show little sign
of recovery since the cod fishery collapsed in the early 1990s. Around the
world, fish such as bluefin tuna and orange roughy face similar declines.
    In the new report ranking supermarkets, Loblaw received the highest
overall score because it released a sustainable seafood policy that would see
the company only selling sustainable seafood by 2013. However, the policy is
short on detail and is not yet implemented, so Loblaw did not receive a
passing mark. The Metro chain received the lowest ranking, in part because it
has no plan to develop a sustainable seafood policy.
    "Metro and several other supermarkets seem to find it acceptable to sell
seafood that is overexploited, illegally fished or destructively farmed," said
Sarah King, Greenpeace oceans campaigner. They are making no effort to protect
the oceans. There is an urgent need for all supermarkets to heed the message
of our campaign: Don't buy, don't sell Redlist fish."

    Editors: a backgrounder and the full Out of Stock, Out of Excuses report
are available at the end of the news release on the Greenpeace press centre:
www.greenpeace.ca/press)

    Editors: Greenpeace will release details of activities in each of the 19
cities as they happen. Details will not be released in advance.




For further information:

For further information: Catherine Vézina, Media and Public Relations
Officer, (514) 212-5749; Beth Hunter, Oceans Campaign Coordinator, (514)
569-8391

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