Half of Leading U.S. Supermarkets Make "Pass" Ranking in Latest Greenpeace Sustainable Seafood Scorecard

As Seafood Retailers Respond to Consumer Demand, Split Develops Among Largest

Media release - April 28, 2010
In the fourth edition of Greenpeace’s seafood sustainability scorecard –Carting Away the Oceans -- released today, half of the leading supermarket chains in the U.S. received ‘passing’ scores in the sustainability of their seafood operations for the first time. Companies that moved into the passing range are: A&P; Delhaize, and Trader Joe’s.

The supermarket chain Target moved up from fourth place to receive top ranking displacing Wegmans to second place while Whole Foods maintained third place from its June 2009 ranking. Trader Joe's which had been the worst ranking of the national supermarket chains surveyed at #17 has since moved to a tenth place ranking with its announcement in March that it is taking specific steps to develop a sustainable seafood operation. While both marketing to cost-conscious consumers, Safeway climbed from 5th place to 4th as Costco dropped from 10th place to 14th.

Of the 20 largest supermarket chains in the United States, several remain that have made no visible effort to increase the sustainability of their seafood operations and continue to ignore scientific warnings about the crisis facing global fisheries and the marine environment. These include: H.E.B., Meijer, Costco, SUPERVALU (and associated banners), Publix, and Winn Dixie.

"A significant divide is developing among the major retailers," said Greenpeace's Senior Markets Campaigner, Casson Trenor. "It's now clear that Wegmans, Target and Whole Foods are making substantive progress reflecting their commitment while others such as H.E.B. and Costco remain committed to selling endangered species and destroying marine ecosystems."

The rankings follow:

1.    Target

2.    Wegmans

3.    Whole Foods

4.    Safeway (Dominicks, Genuardi's, Pavilions, Randall's, Von's)

5.    Ahold USA (Stop & Shop, Giant)

6.    Harris Teeter

7.    A&P (Food Emporium, Pathmark, Super Fresh, Waldbaum's)

8.    Delhaize (Bloom, Food Lion, Hannaford Bros., Sweetbay)

9.    Walmart

10.   Trader Joe's

11.   Price Chopper

12.   Aldi  

13.   Kroger (Baker's, City Market, Dillon's, Fred Meyer, Fry's, King Soopers, Ralph's, Smith's, Quality Food Center - QFC)

14.   Costco

15.   Supervalu (Acme, Albertson's, Bristol Farms, Jewel-Osco, Save-A-Lot, Shaw's)

16.   Giant Eagle

17.   Publix

18.   Winn Dixie

19.   Meijer

20.   H.E. Butt (H.E.B., Central Market)

To help ensure the long-term sustainability of fisheries and marine ecosystems, Greenpeace advocates the creation of a worldwide network of marine reserves and fisheries management based on a precautionary, ecosystem-based approach. Today, supermarkets can help the oceans and meet consumer demand for sustainable products by refusing to sell seafood from fisheries that:

  • exploit endangered, vulnerable and/or protected species, or species with poor stock status;
  • cause habitat destruction and/or lead to ecosystem alterations;
  1. cause negative impacts on other, non-target species;
  • are unregulated, unreported, illegal or managed poorly, and
  • cause negative impacts on local, fishing dependent communities.

Full report and details available at:

http://www.greenpeace.org/usa/press-center/reports4/carting-away-the-oceans

Other contacts: Video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o_aXrlz8n14 Photos: http://comms.greenpeaceusa.org/2010_CATO/ Robert Meyers, Photo Editor, 202-319-2453, CONTACT: Jane Kochersperger, Media Officer, (202) 680-3798 cell; Casson Trenor, Senior Markets Campaigner, (415) 255-9221

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