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Oct 5, 2006 03:58 PM

Fish: Making an Educated Choice

I was just reading in a local newspaper about a Canadian organization call SeaChoice ( with the primary goal of realizing sustainable fisheries in Canada and abroad. I am not affiliated with them at all, however the website includes a handy chart for "Best Choice", "Some Concerns" and "Avoid". I thought it was good information so I thought I would share it. Here's the link directly to the charts:

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  1. Good idea. The Monterey Bay Aquarium also has a list. They have a wallet sized one, too.

    1. Seachoice appears to be the Canadian counterpart of the American Seafood Watch, or vice-versa.

      1. Am I the only one who finds these lists crazy-making? You have to figure out A: what fish is least-endangered, and B: what fish contains the least harmful chemicals. Usually the two lists produce completely different "good" choice options. ARGHHHH!

        1 Reply
        1. re: pikawicca

          I don't find them hard to follow at all; keep in mind that they are a guide, and treat them as such. Personally, I have my own 'won't eat under any circumstances' list (shark fin and octopus, but the latter is for personal reasons that have nothing to do with sustainability, so I have no idea what the lists say about it. Come to think of it, there is a personal aspect to my refusal to eat shark fin: I dive with sharks and love them like friends, and figure if I don't eat them they won't eat me :-) And octopus are just plain too intelligent to eat, IMO. Squid OTOH is generally a 'good' choice and I eat that often...) Now and then I eat something that I know I shouldn't, but I try and moderate it and am aware of what I am doing and try to eat it from known sources whenever possible(example: shrimp).

          As for the lists being different and hard to follow, that has not been my experience, but to the extent it is, keep in mind that they are usually regional in focus. (so salmon from Canada has different issues than salmon from CA, and you thus might expect them to be in different categories). Best to stick to a list distributed by an organization near you geographically (I carry the regional Seafood Watch West Coast Guide in my wallet). You can follow the link that Chowser gave above to choose the region that best fits you (and take another one when you go on vacation!)

        2. Initially, it is overwhelming but on a day to day basis, I don't eat most of the fish on the list, only a few so I know those. Then, if I'm at a special restaurant, all bets are off. There are things I don't eat, like chilean sea bass which are endangered but things like tuna... on occasion is fine.