Healthy Oceans. Healthy Communities.

Major grocers flunk on farmed salmon sustainability 

July 31, 2023

The red marker came out with SeaChoice’s latest Seafood Progress report with nearly all Canadian grocers receiving failing scores for their lack of progress to remove farmed salmon from their stores or take actions to improve their sourcing.   

The report found: 

  • The good: Buy-Low Foods continues to be the only grocer not selling farmed salmon. Sobeys received kudos for preferentially sourcing and promoting land-based closed containment farmed salmon.  

  • The ugly: Most grocers continue to rely on farmed salmon certifications that are not fit for purpose. These certifications, including the Aquaculture Stewardship Council and Best Aquaculture Practices, fail to adequately protect wild salmon from disease or sea lice impacts from certified farms. 

  • The bad: Costco, Loblaws, METRO, Save-On, Sobeys, and Walmart continue to sell open-net pen farmed salmon. 

SeaChoice also found that most grocers avoid labelling farmed salmon as just that - “farmed”. In other words, farmed salmon is often labelled as simply “salmon”. Without proper labelling, shoppers are unable to make informed choices.  

It is clear we need the federal government to step up and confirm a transition plan that removes the open-net pens. Transitioning to land-based aquaculture would expand the supply of closed-containment salmon for grocers, removing their reliance on open-net pens.  

Visit Seafood Progress for the full results.