If you like seafood, you probably eat it whenever you can. But dwindling populations in the ocean means we need to all start taking a more responsible approach—so we can enjoy seafood over the long term.
Greed and Fish
Irresponsible fishing practices have resulted in less fish in a number of Canada’s fisheries. It’s clear, as the David Suzuki Foundation points out, that the supply of fish is not limitless. We’re fishing a lot, and in some cases using equipment that harms the ocean’s floor, damaging the environment in which fish live and reproduce.
Pollution Takes it Toll
Toxic chemicals have a similar effect. We’re contaminating the fish we eat by steadily polluting our oceans. According to the David Suzuki Foundation, tuna, farmed salmon, swordfish, marlin and oysters rank among the species most susceptible to pollutants.
So, what can you do? Start by learning where the seafood you eat comes from. The best way to do this is to buy only seafood with labels showing who caught it, and where. If it’s from an area fished too heavily, move on to the next brand.
Know your species, too. Familiarize yourself with those at risk from being wiped from a specific area. For example, avoid eating wild caviar and Atlantic cod, but feel free to indulge in soft clams from Maine or Canadian Pacific crabs. The secret is to keep yourself informed as to what species are endangered.
You’ll find a comprehensive list at SeaChoice including a wallet-sized card you can print off and carry to the grocery store. You can also enter the name of your fish into their database and get up-to-date information on the status of that fish.