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Getting more planet-friendly protein in your diet is easier than you might think

Earth Month is a great time to take small, actionable steps (like incorporating more MSC certified sustainable seafood into your diet) to be kinder to our planet. With these recipes, you can easily enjoy more planet-friendly seafood at home! 

What is planet-friendly protein?

Planet-friendly is a way to describe something that is not environmentally harmful. When it comes to protein, planet-friendly options are ones that are healthy for you with low environmental impact, like MSC certified sustainable seafood.

While there is no one universally accepted definition, planet-friendly protein:

  • Has a low carbon footprint,
  • Doesn’t drive habitat or biodiversity loss,
  • And minimizes pollution to ecosystems, like waterways.

Take MSC certified salmon, for example. It’s a great source of protein that’s also high in omega-3 fatty acids, which are great for heart health. And the fact that it’s MSC certified means that the fishery has minimal impact on the environment.

It’s a win-win, which is exactly what planet-friendly protein is: good for you and the planet too.

Is seafood planet-friendly?

Seafood is better for the planet. Many studies have found that seafood, especially wild-caught seafood, can have a much lower carbon footprint than land-based proteins like beef and pork, and even eggs or chicken. This is largely because wild-capture fisheries don’t require the use of land (they won’t change an area’s natural landscape or habitat), use almost no water, don’t cause nutrient pollution (since wild fish don’t need to be fed by humans), and have minimal impact on the physical environment compared to land-based proteins.

What makes MSC certified sustainable seafood better for the planet?

When you make the switch to MSC certified sustainable seafood, you can be sure you’re making a planet-friendly choice. That’s because MSC certified fisheries fish with the future in mind.

In order to achieve certification, a fishery must ensure that there are always enough fish to continue fishing indefinitely, and that they’ve minimized their environmental impact and aren’t leaving a lasting impact on the surrounding ecosystem (including other species they’re not fishing for).

Plus, they are continually improving and innovating to meet best practice. In just the last three years, MSC certified fisheries have made 372 improvements to the fishing practices! Read more about how fisheries are improving here.

What other benefits does certified sustainable seafood have?

It’s healthy for you. Seafood is well-documented as incredibly healthy. Whether you need more omega-3s (from a fish filet or krill oil supplement), are looking for a lean source of protein, seafood has you covered. 

MSC certified sustainable seafood fights food fraud. When you buy seafood with the MSC blue fish label, it can increase your confidence in your purchase. While the seafood sector in general has fairly high rate of mislabeling, that chance drops to less than 1% if you make the switch to MSC certified seafood. Thanks to a third-party verified and regularly audited supply chain, you can be sure that the MSC certified seafood product you buy came from a certified sustainable source. 

It provides economic stability and protects livelihoods. For fish harvesters, MSC certified sustainable seafood can help secure livelihoods. By ensuring enough fish is left in our ocean, lakes, and rivers, and that fishing operations don’t harm the environment, fish harvesters are ensuring job security for themselves and future generations. 

For chefs, sustainable seafood can help protect a resource they rely on. Chefs can feel good that they’re not contributing to overfishing and that the seafood options they love to serve will be around forever. 

Seafood is important to food security. For many people around the world, seafood is an essential, healthy component of their diet. In fact, 3.3 billion people depend on seafood for at least 20% of their daily animal protein intake. For those folks, a sustainable fishery means their main source of protein isn’t going anywhere.