Be the environment's best friend

Be the environment's best friend

With an ever-increasing selection of fish-based dog food treats on the market, how can you be sure you’re making an informed choice that is both good for your dog and good for the environment?

Fish offers a host of benefits as a food source for dogs. Where this fish comes from can have a huge effect on the health of our oceans as well as our dogs.

Choosing dog treats that carry the ‘blue fish label’ from the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) ensures that the fish is traceable and sustainable. So why is this so important?

In the 1990s fish stocks were crashing around the globe, negatively effecting both the marine environment and commercial fishing. In 1992 the Northern cod fishery off Canada’s eastern coast had plummeted to just 1% of its earlier levels after 500 years of fishing in the area. Intensive overfishing with industrial trawlers was a major factor in this collapse. Able to fish over much larger areas, and to greater depths, these trawlers also have high levels of by-catch – species of little commercial interest but important to the local ecosystem.

 

So what was the answer?

The MSC was born out of the idea of setting up a market-driven system that worked with companies who wanted to be part of the solution. Enabling these markets to drive the sustainability of marine fish stocks to benefit both business and the environment.  

Established in the late 1990s, the MSC is an international, non-profit organisation whose mission is to use the ‘blue fish label’ and their fishery certification programme to contribute to the health of the world’s oceans. They recognise and reward sustainable fishing practices and their MSC Fisheries Standard has three key principles: Effective fisheries management; Sustainable fish stocks; and Minimising environmental impact.

For fish and fish products to be sold with the MSC label, the seafood must come from a fishery certified to the strict MSC Fisheries Standard. Once caught, this fish is kept separate from non-certified fish all along the supply chain, from ocean to plate. So you can be sure it really is from a certified, sustainable fishery.

So by looking for the ‘blue fish label’ when selecting your dog’s healthy fish-based treats you can be assured that you are contributing towards sustainable fish stocks – meaning that there are enough fish left in the sea to reproduce. You’ll also be helping to minimise the environmental impacts of fishing operations and encouraging the effective management of fisheries. So you’ll know that your dog’s treats are good for the ocean because the fish is wild, sustainable, and traceable back to a certified fishery.


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