US grocer Food Lion has launched what it termed an "industry-leading" sustainable seafood policy that encompasses fresh, frozen, canned and packaged seafood products.

The chain, owned by Belgian retailer Delhaize Group, will provide "full traceability" for its seafood products. Manufacturers supplying wild caught seafood will be required to provide "enforceable and science-based management plans" that ensure seafood populations remain "healthy". Meanwhile, farmed seafood will be certified by the Gulf of Maine Research Institute to ensure farming techniques do not harm communities, workers, the environment or human health.

Karen Fernald, SVP of merchandising at Food Lion, said: "Through our policy, customers can trust that the seafood products they buy in our stores today are responsibly harvested. Our seafood products have been documented as meeting important criteria around sustainability, adding Food Lion to an elite list of grocers in the US to accomplish this goal."

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FOOD LION UNVEILS INDUSTRY-LEADING SEAFOOD SUSTAINABILITY POLICY

Policy Provides Customers with Easy Access to Responsibly Harvested Seafood at Food Lion’s Same Low Prices throughout Entire Store

Mar 5, 2014

SALISBURY, N.C. — Food Lion announced today that it has implemented an industry- leading sustainable seafood policy that covers approximately 1,000 fresh, frozen, canned or packaged products sold across the store.

“At Food Lion, we believe that we have a responsibility to protect seafood species for generations to come,” said Karen Fernald, Senior Vice President of Merchandising at Food Lion.  “Through our policy, customers can trust that the seafood products they buy in our stores today are responsibly harvested. Our seafood products have been documented as meeting important criteria around sustainability, adding Food Lion to an elite list of grocers in the U.S. to accomplish this goal.”

To celebrate the launch, Food Lion today is donating 9,000 sustainable seafood products to local food banks. Food banks receiving the donations include Second Harvest Food Bank of Metrolina in Charlotte, N.C.; Food Bank of Central & Eastern North Carolina in Raleigh, N.C.; Feedmore Food Bank in Richmond, Va.; Harvest Hope Food Bank in Columbia, S.C.; Low Country Food Bank in Charleston, S.C.; Low Country Food Bank in Myrtle Beach, S.C.; Maryland Food Bank in Baltimore, Md.; Food Bank of Southeastern Virginia in Norfolk, Va., and Second Harvest Food Bank in Northwest North Carolina in Winston-Salem, N.C.

Under Food Lion’s seafood sustainability policy:

  • Food Lion’s suppliers will provide full traceability back to the source fishery or seafood farm for seafood products sold.
  • Wild-caught seafood will come from source fisheries that are governed by credible, enforceable and science-based management plans that respect the amount of harvest to ensure seafood populations will continue to be healthy in the future.
  • Farm-raised seafood is certified and reviewed to ensure that production does not harm communities, workers, the environment or human health.
  • The Gulf of Maine Research Institute will confirm fisheries that supply our seafood are responsibly managed.
  • Monitoring and compliance measures are in place to ensure harvest levels are maintained within appropriate limits.

“We are extremely proud of the work Food Lion has done to ensure they are contributing to the long-term sustainability of seafood around the world,” said Jen Levin, Sustainable Seafood Program Manager at the Gulf of Maine Research Institute. “Food Lion has been resolute in following through with its policy’s commitments, which has required a great deal of investment on their part.”

Original source: Delhaize