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Anita Lee

Anita Lee

MSC Senior Commercial Outreach Manager, Oceania 

How chefs can source certified sustainable seafood with confidence

October 13, 2019

Markus Werner, Corporate Executive Chef, Delaware North at the Executive Chefs Club in Melbourne on 8 October

Markus Werner, Corporate Executive Chef, Delaware North at the Executive Chefs Club in Melbourne on 8 October.

At the recent Executive Chefs Club meeting at the iconic Rod Laver Arena in Melbourne there was much chatter amongst some of Victoria's top chefs around the S word. Scrumptious, Sexy, Seafood? No, the bigger and more important S word… Sustainability. 

The S word can sometimes be a bit of a conversation stopper. Everyone has a different view and definition. With over 50 top chefs in the one room, there was a lot of confusion around what sustainable seafood means.

The top questions chefs have about sourcing sustainable seafood 

What is the Marine Stewardship Council and how do I get certified?

The Marine Stewardship Council is an international non-profit on a mission to end overfishing and restore fish stocks for future generations.

We do this by maintaining the MSC Fisheries Standard, an internationally recognised, benchmark that allows fisheries to have their sustainability assessed on three criteria: healthy fish populations, habitat impact and effective management. If a fishery is successful and becomes MSC certified, seafood they land can be sold with the MSC's blue fish tick as long as all of the supply chain (processors, retailers etc) can meet our second benchmark, the MSC Chain of Custody Standard.


As with many other standards, certification is achieved through independent certifiers and we're here to guide you at every step.

What is sustainable seafood?

Sustainable seafood has been caught in a way that means there’s plenty more fish in the sea now and in the future. Simply put, it means seafood forever.

At the Marine Stewardship Council, we're on a mission to end overfishing and ensure there is delicious, wild caught seafood for future generations. Our vision is for the world’s oceans to be teeming with life – today, tomorrow and for the generations to come. 

Who is responsible?

Everyone can play a part in ensuring we have seafood forever. Every partner in the supply chain from ocean to plate has a role to play - everyone can make an impact. 

How can I order MSC certified sustainable seafood?

You can order MSC certified sustainable seafood from leading distributors who carry MSC certified product lines, such as Bidfood and Foodlink. Find an MSC certified supplier with our Supplier Directory tool. 

What is the MSC Chain of Custody Standard?

Certification to the MSC Chain of Custody standard provides assurance along the supply chain that products can be traced back to an MSC certified sustainable fishery. Learn more about the 5 principles of Chain of Custody that is eliminating seafood fraud.

How to get involved

It's never been easier for chefs to source sustainable seafood with confidence. There are now over 25 species of MSC certified seafood available in the Australian marketplace. More species are currently being certified. Plus an increasing number of foodservice distributors are opting to carry a growing portfolio of MSC certified product lines.

The afternoon’s conversation was a great catalyst for all in the room to really start using sustainability as part of their everyday vocabulary. I was also lucky enough to sample delicious seafood delights from all corners of Australia. To ensure everyone else can too, conversations in the Foodservice sector need to continue both in and outside of the room and with both current and upcoming chefs. We all have a role to play in the future of seafood - from fishery to distributor to chef to consumer. 

For more information in Australia and New Zealand, contact Anita Lee from the MSC Oceania Team.

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