Buying sustainably

With issues such as illegal fishing and the depletion of fish stocks making the news on a regular basis these days, buying sustainable seafood is a high priority for modern consumers.

Luckily, supermarkets and fishmongers across the UK have made sure that there's plenty of sustainable seafood on the market, as long as consumers know where to look for it. We've assembled some of the best tips and tools to help you make the best decisions when it comes to buying sustainable seafood.


Don't be afraid to ask your fishmonger about the origins and catching methods of the fish on display.

Mix up your seafood a little; the UK's five most popular seafood species are under considerably more strain than others, simply because we buy them so often. Try eating a range of different fish species - many are easily swapped within recipes. For example, if a recipe asks for cod or haddock, try it with coley or Pollock.


Seafish have developed a fisheries risk assessment tool (known as RASS) that will help buyers make an informed judgement on the risks they face when sourcing seafood.

Buying seafood 'in season' can ensure that you aren't buying premature or breeding fish. The Marine Conservation Society has published a useful guide to buying seasonal fish, which includes a seasonality table of over 30 species of seafood.

The Marine Stewardship Council has produced the sustainable seafood product finder, which contains information about over 700 seafood products sold in the UK.

If you're on the lookout for sustainable tuna, be sure to take a look at Greenpeace's tuna league table, which provides comprehensive information about the tinned tuna produced by some of the UK's leading brands.

The Marine Conservation Society's FishOnline site includes a searchable database of fish and shellfish species, featuring comprehensive information on capture methods and stock information.