Tuesday, June 18, 2024

‘Super Seafood’ winners unveiled at the Sustainable Seafood Awards

The Marine Stewardship Council (MSC), an international non-profit on a mission to end overfishing by setting standards for sustainable fishing and supply chain assurance, has announced the winners of the annual Sustainable Seafood Awards Australia, run in partnership with the Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC).

Coinciding with Sustainable Seafood Week starting 27 March, a campaign to raise awareness of the MSC and ASC seafood certification labels, the awards celebrate the organisations and individuals working together to ensure seafood supplies are safeguarded for this and future generations.

The event, which was hosted by Alice Zaslavsky, an award-winning author, broadcaster, and tastemaker, saw a range of awards given, including:

  • ALDI won the MSC Best Sustainable Seafood Supermarket for its wide range of everyday affordable and accessible MSC-labelled products and its continued commitment to ocean health.
  • The MSC Best Sustainable Seafood Product Award went to Austral Fisheries for its Karumba Banana Prawns available at Woolworths.
  • The MSC Best Sustainable Petfood Product Award to Mars Petcare Australia for its DINE® Pulled Menu – Gravy Indulgence with Tuna.
  • The prestigious MSC Lifetime Achievement Award was presented to Manni Kalisperis from Simplot for his legacy in pioneering a long-term movement towards sustainable fishing and sustainable seafood.
  • Goolwa PipiCo in South Australia was awarded the MSC Community Champion Award for its world-leading efforts in community engagement and first nations reconciliation.
  • Brad Adams from Rare Foods Australia was named MSC Sustainable Fishing Hero for his leadership and pioneering approach to embedding sustainability values within the world’s first commercial abalone ranch.

MSC CEO Rupert Howes said, “These leaders in sustainable seafood are creating a wave of change.

“The ocean is the largest ecosystem on Earth, and Australia is home to the third largest marine jurisdiction in the world with an Exclusive Economic Zone covering 8.2 million square metres. There is huge potential for our ocean to feed and sustain us if sustainably managed,” he said.

“There is growing recognition that food systems must be transformed – that achieving the U.N. Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) requires shifting toward a system that is more diverse, resilient, and just, as well as healthier.

“These awards recognise what we’re seeing globally, signs that brands are stepping up their commitment to source only sustainable and certified seafood,” Mr Howes said.

“Blue foods” – foods derived from aquatic animals, plants and algae cultivated and captured in freshwater and marine environments – have much to offer in securing the health and wellbeing of future generations.”

Australian consumers can now enjoy a wide choice of MSC-certified sustainable seafood, with over 300 products available across different categories, including canned, chilled, frozen, pet and health and wellbeing supplements. The MSC blue fish tick label on a product indicates MSC-certified sustainable seafood from healthy, wild fish populations.

Super Seafood is certified

During Sustainable Seafood Week, the MSC and ASC will raise awareness of their certification labels with a new advertising campaign promoting certified seafood, dubbed ‘super seafood’. The advert showcases MSC-certified fisheries and ASC-certified farms in Australia and the heroes behind the scenes that make certified seafood possible.

Speaking about the ACCC’s recent crackdown on greenwashing, Sustainable Choice Group founder and CEO Kiarne Treacy said, “When used correctly, certification schemes like the MSC and the ASC have the power to guide and encourage more sustainable consumption and play a critical tool in educating the masses that the choices you make at the supermarket really do make a difference.

“Following the recent investigation by the ACCC into sustainability claims, we can now see a clear way forward for brands to communicate meaningful and honest sustainability messaging. A key area of focus is the use of eco-labels that are from third-party accreditations compared to self-made claims,” she said.

“Now is the time for businesses to review their use of third-party certifications and labels to ensure they are highlighting the specific product or brand they apply to. Gone are the days of saying ‘better for the ocean’ and leaving it at that.”

The MSC Sustainable Seafood Awards Australia winners

The judging panel included seafood and sustainability experts from within Australia and around the world.

The judges scored entries by looking for impact, leadership, commitment, collaboration and momentum.

Best Sustainable Seafood Supermarket ALDI Australia

Best Sustainable Seafood Product Austral Fisheries – Karumba Banana Prawns 1kg

Best Sustainable Petfood Product Mars Petcare Australia – DINE® Pulled Menu – Gravy Indulgence with Tuna

MSC Community Champion Goolwa PipiCo

MSC Sustainable Fishing Hero Brad Adams, Rare Foods Australia

MSC Lifetime Achievement Manni Kalisperis, Simplot Australia

Special Recognition for trailblazing efforts

  • Bidfood
  • Coles Supermarkets
  • Simplot Australia
  • Western Rock Lobster Council.

The Aquaculture Stewardship Council, an international non-profit on a mission to transform aquaculture towards environmental sustainability and social responsibility, also handed out ASC awards to various organisations and individuals.

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