Seafood Watch - Seafood Guide

Marlin, Blue

© Diane Rome Peebles
SEAFOODRATINGMARKET NAMESLOCATION/CERTIFICATIONHOW CAUGHT/FARMED
Marlin, Blue Avoid: Avoid these products for now. These fish come from sources that are overfished or fished or farmed in ways that harm the environment. A'u, Kajiki Imported Wild
Marlin, Blue Good Alternative: These are good alternatives to the best choices column. There are some concerns with how they are fished or farmed – or with the health of their habitats due to other human impacts. A'u, Kajiki Hawaii Wild
Marlin, Striped Avoid: Avoid these products for now. These fish come from sources that are overfished or fished or farmed in ways that harm the environment. A'u, Nairagi Worldwide Wild


Blue Marlin, Wild, Hawaii or Imported

There's uncertainty about the health and abundance of blue marlin populations; however, Seafood Watch recommends blue marlin from Hawaii as a "Good Alternative", due to minimal bycatch by the U.S. fleet.

Consumer Note

When purchasing blue marlin, be sure that it was caught in the Hawaiian fishery.

Health Alert

Environmental Defense Fund has issued a health advisory for blue marlin due to high levels of mercury.

Summary

Blue marlin is an open ocean species found throughout much of the world's temperate and tropical oceans. Limited and uncertain information on the blue marlin population in the Pacific makes assessment difficult.

The blue found in Hawaiian markets are mostly accidental bycatch in the tuna longline fisheries. There is considerable concern about bycatch from longlining. However, fishery managers and fishermen in the U.S. fleet have made great strides in reducing bycatch in recent years through changes in regulations and modifications to fishing gear.

While blue marlin caught by the Hawaiian fleet is still recommended as a "Good Alternative," consumers should note that illegally caught marlin from the Atlantic Ocean is available on the U.S. market and is ranked as "Avoid."


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How fish are caught or farmed makes a difference. Fishing boat