But to ensure that future generations can enjoy seafood too, it’s vital that shoppers of all ages choose sustainably sourced seafood, says the MSC.
A YouGov survey for the non-profit seafood ecolabel found that three-quarters of over-55s bought fish to eat at home in the previous month, more than any other age group. Just 6 per cent said they never eat fish or seafood, compared with 18 per cent of those aged 18 – 24 years.
While most UK adults stick to just a few favourites like salmon, cod and tuna, more than a fifth (22 per cent) of over-55s who purchased fish recently bought five or more different types, and an adventurous 12 per cent put as many as six or more seafood species in their shopping basket.
Over-55s buy more than half of all the salmon sold in the UK and the MSC’s survey found they are more likely than younger shoppers to buy other types of oily fish too, like mackerel, sardines, herrings and kippers.
A fifth (20 per cent) of over-55s surveyed said they were eating more fish now than a year ago, with most of them saying they’d increased their intake because they were trying to eat more healthily (66 per cent). Almost half (47 per cent) said they were eating more fish because they had reduced the meat in their diet.
Commenting on the survey findings, Toby Middleton, Programme Director for MSC in the UK & North Atlantic, said: “Baby boomers seem to be the UK’s biggest seafood lovers, but whatever your age, and whether you stick to firm favourites like salmon and shrimp or regularly put sardines and scallops in your shopping basket, by choosing seafood that’s been sustainably sourced you can help to ensure that fish stocks are maintained at healthy levels, so that future generations can enjoy seafood, too.”