In 2008, Seattle Fish Company became the only seafood wholesaler in the Denver area to obtain Marine Stewardship Council’s (MSC) traceability certification for sustainable seafood. The MSC is the world’s leading certification and eco-labeling program for sustainable seafood.
Under the MSC program, wild-capture fisheries can become certified if they successfully complete assessment by an independent third party against a rigorous scientific standard for sustainability and environmental responsibility. MSC’s Chain of Custody certification, which Seattle Fish Company has achieved, indicates adherence to strict traceability standards. Seattle Fish Company’s products from MSC-certified fisheries can now use the MSC’s distinctive blue oval eco-label.
To educate its staff and clients about the importance of seafood sustainability, Seattle Fish Company hosted its first annual sustainability event on Wednesday, March 4, 2009. Over the course of the week, Seattle Fish implemented a series of educational sessions as well as host lectures by a number of speakers, including representatives from the MSC and Elise Wiggins, executive chef for Panzano. Special guests Kristofor Lofgren and Brandon Hill, the owner and executive chef of Bamboo Sushi in Portland, OR, which in 2008 was the first independent restaurant in the United States to become MSC certified, discussed the topic of maximizing sustainability – from sushi selection to the paper used for menus to the energy that powers the restaurant – as well as preparing some of Bamboo Sushi’s seafood creations using MSC-certified sustainable seafood.
"Seattle Fish Company is a 91-year-old business that continues to be successful because we think independently and adopt new practices while maintaining a high-quality product and carrying on our tradition of personal service,” said James Iacino, president and third-generation owner of Seattle Fish Company. “One of our long-term goals for the company is to implement new sustainability practices, and becoming MSC-certified was one major step in that direction. We are excited to host our first sustainability event and feel we can help educate our clients about seafood sustainability."
"Seattle Fish Company’s commitment to providing MSC-certified seafood and educating clients is an excellent model for suppliers across the country to follow,” said Susan Marks, MSC Americas commercial manager. "We look forward to working with Seattle Fish to help implement sustainable seafood programs in restaurants and stores throughout their region."