Why Australians should eat NZ seafood

AUSTRALIANS are being encouraged to buy seafood from New Zealand because of its high sustainability credentials.
The message that more than half of New Zealand’s wild caught fish is now certified as sustainable by the Marine Stewardship Council went out recently on Sustainable Seafood Day. But the country is hoping that the message will stick throughout the year.
Among the fisheries certified sustainable by the MSC are albacore tuna, hoki, hake, ling, southern blue whiting and orange roughy, with more in the pipeline such as the skipjack tuna fishery that is in the final stages of assessment.
Jo-anne McCrea, WWF Australian fisheries and seafood manager, said: ‘With the global population expected to reach 9.7 billion by 2050 and ever increasing demands for food, it’s vital that marine habitats are protected by maintaining environmentally sustainable, productive fisheries.’
Anne Gabriel, MSC Oceania programme director, said: ‘Some 75 per cent of Australian seafood consumers believe that in order to save the ocean, we have to consume fish and seafood only from sustainable sources.
‘We are moving in the right direction – there have been significant improvements seen in Australia, New Zealand and around the world.
‘Sustainable Seafood Day is all about promoting these achievements and encouraging Australians to keep voting with their wallets.’
George Clement, chief executive of the Deepwater Group, a non-profit organisation dedicated to ensuring that New Zealand fisheries are both profitable and sustainable, said: ‘It is a proud moment to see New Zealand’s fisheries being recognised as sustainable.
‘It validates the New Zealand seafood industry and government’s ongoing investment into sound, scientifically grounded fisheries management and our desire to meet these rigorous global standards.
‘Having this level of assurance that these fisheries are being sustainably managed is good for the environment, good for consumers and good for New Zealand’s economy.’