Youngs ban purchase of North Sea cod Published: 19 October, 2006
YOUNG’S has become the first major UK seafood producer to impose a complete ban on buying North Sea Cod.
The company says it follows this week’s announcement by the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) that cod is now outside safe biological limits and is only at one third of precautionary levels at which the stock is believed to be sustainable.
The Grimsby-based producer added that it had not bought cod in any significant quantity for some time.
However, to fulfil customer requirements and as a sign of support for the local fishing industry, it did purchase less than two per cent of its total cod requirement from the North Sea fleet in 2005.
“We now take the view that we cannot support North Sea cod fishing while the current scientific view remains,” Young’s said in a statement. “We are advising our customers to either move to other species that we supply or to buy cod from our alternative sources, which are Iceland and the Barents Sea.”
The Young’s move is likely to be followed by other seafood processors, especially those which supply supermarket groups who insist on only selling fish from sustainable sources.
Yesterday Young’s pledged to not take any fish caught by bottom trawl methods, which are detrimental to the environment.
It stated: “We will seek to avoid bottom trawled fish where we believe it is likely to have a detrimental effect on the environment, and we do not support the use of bottom gears for sea bottom trawling and we do not sell species such as grenadier or rabbit fish, which are caught by this method.”