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Sainsbury's becomes first UK supermarket to offer 100 percent ASC certified Scottish salmon

Sainsbury's is the first UK supermarket to have 100 percent of its fresh Scottish salmon range independently certified by the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC).

The Fish Site
by The Fish Site
5 April 2022, at 2:28pm
person taking salmon off a grocery store shelf
Sainsburys has taken efforts to ensure that the food on its shelves is sustainably produced and sourced

Seafood that carries the ASC logo has been sourced from farms that have been independently certified as both environmentally and socially responsible.

To meet the ASC standard, farms must undertake an independent audit in which they are assessed against a host of strict, science-based requirements. These conditions include the quality of the water, impact on the seabed and fish health, through to the fair treatment and pay of workers on the farm. Certified farms are re-audited every year and must regularly publish key performance metrics to ensure ongoing compliance.

In Scotland less than 5 percent of all salmon farms have been certified against the exacting criteria set by ASC. 100 percent of Sainsbury’s sea bass, sea bream, tilapia, basa and chilled and frozen king prawns products are already ASC certified.

salmon packaging
UK shoppers can look for the ASC logo on their farmed salmon

When it comes to sustainable foods, 16 percent of consumers report that a lack of understanding about what is and isn’t sustainable is a barrier to a more eco-conscious diet, despite nearly three-quarters (73 percent) thinking it is important to buy food that has a low environmental impact. Sainsbury’s is taking steps to ensure that customers can be confident that any selection of fresh seafood purchased in store or online will be fresh, of high quality and responsibly sourced.

The news comes as Sainsbury’s continues with its mission to help everyone eat better, making healthy and sustainable diets – which are good for customers’ health as well as the planet – accessible to everyone.

Gavin Hodgeson, head of agriculture, aquaculture and horticulture at Sainsbury’s said, “we know it’s our responsibility to ensure the food on our shelves is as sustainably sourced as possible, which is why we’re so pleased to become the first UK retailer to offer 100 percent ASC certified fresh Scottish salmon.

“Over the next few years we’ll continue working closely with our suppliers to ensure food is sourced sustainably from all perspectives - socially, environmentally and economically.”

Chris Ninnes, ASC CEO said, “we believe consumers want to make a difference with their food choices, by choosing seafood from responsible farmers. But this can only happen if retailers provide shoppers with a comprehensive choice of certified products, which is why this commitment by Sainsbury’s is so important.

“Scottish salmon is a world-famous product, for good reason. But it must be produced in a way that also preserves the iconic environment in which it is farmed. Sainsbury’s customers now have the chance to play their part in supporting responsible salmon farming by looking for the ASC logo.”

Sainsbury’s has committed to becoming Net Zero in its own operations by 2035, five years earlier than its original ambition. Recently the retailer has also been helping Prevented Ocean Plastic repurpose 297 tonnes of plastic from the coastline into packaging for fish and strawberries.