Greenpeace International Seafood Red list

Page - August 16, 2008

Greenpeace is asking for urgent action on these species – if retailers and the public care about the state of our oceans, these are the species they should avoid buying.

The fish species are on this list for one or more ofthe following reasons:

  • They have a life history that makes them very vulnerable to fishing and there is little or no data available to show that the stocks are healthy and are being fished at a sustainable rate.
  • They are commonly sourced from overfished and depleted stocks, or are being fished at such a high rate that stocks are being depleted rapidly
  • The fishing methods used to catch the fish are often highly destructive to other oceans creatures and/or habitats.

The Greenpeace ‘Red-Grade’ Criteria for Unsustainable Fisheries provides more detail and background information for the assessment criteria used by Greenpeace scientists, and can be downloaded by clicking on the links on the bottom of this page.

For some of the species listed, there might be a few stocks that are not yet overfished, that are caught with more sustainable fishing methods, and would therefore not be graded red. Same is true for some aquaculture farms. This can be explored by applying the Greenpeace ‘Red-Grade’ Criteria to that particular fishery/farm.

Does this mean that everything not on this red list is sustainable?

No. There are many other types of fish and seafood that are from unsustainable fisheries. The ones on the Greenpeace International seafood red list are the most commonly sold species that supermarkets need to take urgent action on to ensure the future of these species and the fisheries. As seafood markets and consumer preferences for seafood differ from country to country there are specific Greenpeace Seafood Red Lists for many countries. Make sure to take a look at your national Greenpeace website to see if there is a list especially for your country.

See also: