News and opinion

Katia Taillefer & Jennifer Lambert

A Decade Long Partnership Between the MSC and Loblaw

October 5, 2021

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Seafood is an important part of many Canadians’ meals…whether as a healthy and convenient weekday dinner or when celebrating a special occasion.  However, for some shoppers choosing seafood can also be challenging and confusing.  No matter which Loblaw store you shop at, we aim to make that experience easy and convenient.  Our promise is to offer a wide selection of delicious and sustainable seafood options, ensuring that every product is sourced to our strict standards. 

An ongoing journey in corporate social responsibility 

Loblaw’s commitment to sustainable seafood began in 2009 and has evolved over the past decade to continuously work towards sourcing only sustainable seafood across our stores. Our Corporate Social Responsibly priorities include sourcing responsibly and respecting the environment, and our aim is to reduce the environmental impact of our operations and to invest in protecting and restoring biodiversity not only in Canada but also internationally 

A steady increase in innovation and collaboration across our business, within our supply chains and directly with our suppliers enables us to provide products and services that reflect the values of both our company and our customers. 

Strong partnerships in sourcing sustainable seafood drive meaningful change

With the seafood industry constantly evolving, our sourcing practices require diligent monitoring and engagement from every stakeholder in the supply chain to meet our ambitious sustainability goals. Robust research and efforts are dedicated to meet our seafood commitments, and these accomplishments leverage strong partnerships with industry leaders such as the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) and Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC). Sourcing sustainable seafood, whether wild-caught or farm-raised, requires greater protection of aquatic habitats and more attention to careful harvesting.  

At Loblaw, we have taken several different approaches over the years to protect and preserve Canada’s nature and our shared biodiversity. As part of this initiative, we’ve committed to source certified sustainable seafood to ensure the health of seafood ecosystems for our current, and future generations of consumers. We included a collaboration with the MSC and ASC in our sustainable seafood policy to ensure we source from trusted fisheries, farms and suppliers that uphold the highest sustainability standards. The MSC chain of custody traceability process is vital in ensuring that our products are sustainably and responsibly sourced.  

The team at MSC Canada continues to support the education of colleagues and suppliers on their standards to ensure compliance is upheld in all areas of the business. The support of the MSC is an incredible resource and the team informs us on unique and impactful initiatives which Loblaw can support to promote the growth of the sustainable seafood industry in Canada and abroad. Their vast knowledge is always appreciated to inform sourcing decisions and marketing tactics to demonstrate the sustainability of our certified seafood to our loyal customers.  

Clear information helps consumers shop sustainably 

The MSC plays an important role in educating our consumers on sustainable seafood. As the demand for high quality and traceable seafood increases, verifiable and recognizable claims on products backed by eco-labels are helpful for our consumers, and the MSC certification label helps us successfully communicate our efforts on sustainability. We continue to build on our success by using the easily recognized MSC and ASC logos on our products, such as our newly launched President’s Choice Butter & Lemon Lobster Skewers (pictured below). We are proud to offer more than 200 MSC and ASC certified sustainable and responsible products across our stores, including more than 75 President’s Choice and Seaquest products.   

It is encouraging to see that all of our efforts, along with many other companies in Canada and around the world, are having a positive impact on the health of our oceans and the health of wild seafood populations.  This demonstrates that Canadians can confidently continue to eat sustainable seafood and make it a part of their everyday meals and special celebrations.

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