Greenpeace salutes Metro’s move to stop selling overfished species

Feature story - September 23, 2010
Greenpeace applauds the announcement today by Metro that it will remove seven overfished species from sale in its supermarkets. Metro’s move comes three months after the company committed to a sustainable seafood policy after placing fifth in Greenpeace’s 2010 ranking of the eight major supermarket chains in Canada.

The Atalantic cod : one of the redlist species Metro will remove from sale in its supermarkets in spring 2011.


Metro’s removal from sale of bluefin tuna, sharks, orange roughy, and skates and rays, means Costco Canada is the only major Canadian retailer that refuses to take any such action. Metro’s removal of Chilean sea bass leaves only Sobeys continuing to sell it. Metro has also stopped selling New Zealand hoki, and perhaps most notably, Canadian cod. Four cod stocks were recently designated by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC) as endangered.


 “It’s encouraging to see Metro implementing its policy and taking the issue of overfishing seriously. Metro’s stopping the sale of Atlantic cod in particular shows a commitment to the future health of Canada’s fish stocks. We are asking all retailers still selling this species to follow suit.”

- Sarah King, Greenpeace oceans campaigner -

In 2009, Metro placed last in Greenpeace’s ranking, but since then has shown continued progress into fifth place this year. Greenpeace is urging Metro and other retailers to keep up the momentum and begin to address some of the more popular and more widely sold species, including farmed Atlantic salmon and yellowfin tuna. All eight ranked retailers continue to sell these Redlist species despite the indisputable impacts on our oceans.

For the species remaining in its seafood counters, Metro has begun to implement improved labelling on fresh products. Metro plans to make information available to its customers including the common name, scientific name, and where and how the species was caught or farmed.

Greenpeace has been campaigning for the removal of all Redlist species  from supermarket shelves to allow them to recover or until fishing methods become sustainable. Greenpeace is also calling for the full protection of Canada’s endangered cod stocks, meaning its rightful listing under Canada’s Species at Risk Act (SARA) with other endangered species.

Read the Greenpeace Red list fish.

Read the latest supermarket ranking report “Taking Stock: Ranking supermarkets on seafood sustainability” shows how Metro ranked in June 2010.

Urge Costco to stop selling out the oceans and follow the lead of Canada's other retailers

At the supermarkets, do greener seafood choices.