Sea of Distress: The Foodservice Industry, Ocean Health and Seafood Workers

Report ranks foodservice companies on their efforts to protect our oceans and seafood workers

by David Pinsky

August 23, 2016

Greenpeace’s Sea of Distress report evaluates and ranks 15 major U.S. foodservice companies on their commitments to sustainable seafood. How does your foodservice provider score?  

Click here to download Sea of Distress, Greenpeace’s first assessment of foodservice companies, a $700 billion industry feeding millions of people every day who dine outside the home.

Unfamiliar to many, companies like Sysco, US Foods, Performance Food Group, Compass Group, Aramark, and Sodexo work to feed people in K-12 to university university cafeterias, corporate dining halls, restaurants, sports arenas, amusement parks, hospitals,  and home. These companies provide food and services for many clients from Disney World to Walmart, Google, Yosemite National Park, Red Lobster, and even the U.S. Congress.

This report identifies which major foodservice companies are leaders in sustainable, ethical seafood and which are failing. The findings indicate foodservice companies are failing millions of consumers on sustainable, ethical seafood.

Greenpeace’s Sea of Distress report evaluates and ranks 15 major U.S. foodservice companies on their commitments to sustainable seafood.

Sodexo, Compass Group, and Aramark, topped the list for their sustainable seafood practices; however, each company received a low passing score and must work hard to improve its operations. Each of the remaining 12 profiled companies failed, including Sysco, U.S. Foods, Performance Food Group, Delaware North, and Centerplate.

Several companies procure destructive and potentially unethical canned tuna from Thai Union Group (owner of Chicken of the Sea), including Sysco, Compass Group, Gordon Food Service, and Shamrock Foods. Many companies have questionable records regarding their treatment of U.S. workers and respect for labor rights, and must do more to guarantee any seafood they provide is not implicated in labor or humans rights abuses.

Applauding industry leaders and exposing those lagging behind is key to getting foodservice companies to take responsibility and play their part in protecting our oceans and the people who depend on them.

Is the company providing food at your school, workplace, or favorite restaurant selling sustainable seafood? Learn more in the Sea of Distress report.


David Pinsky

By David Pinsky

David authors Greenpeace USA’s annual seafood sustainability report for the nation’s largest supermarkets, holding major companies accountable and shifting seafood practices that have global impacts on our oceans.

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