Seafood Watch - Seafood Guide

Salmon

© B. Guild Gillespie/www.chartingnature.com
SEAFOODRATINGMARKET NAMESLOCATION/CERTIFICATIONHOW CAUGHT/FARMED
Salmon Best Choice: These fish are abundant, well managed and fished or farmed in environmentally friendly ways. Chinook, Coho, Chum, Keta, King, Pink, Red, Silver & Sockeye Salmon, Sake Alaska Drift Gillnet, Purse Seine, Troll
Salmon 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. Chinook, Coho, Chum, Keta, King, Pink, Red, Silver & Sockeye Salmon, Sake California, Oregon, Washington Drift Gillnet, Purse Seine, Troll
Salmon 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. Pink & Sockeye Salmon Fraser River, Washington Reefnet
Salmon Best Choice: These fish are abundant, well managed and fished or farmed in environmentally friendly ways. Sockeye Salmon Fraser River (early Summer-run), Washington Reefnet
Salmon 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. Chum, Pink, Chinook, Coho & Sockeye Salmon, Sake Marine Stewardship Council Certified Wild
Salmon Roe Best Choice: These fish are abundant, well managed and fished or farmed in environmentally friendly ways. Ikura Alaska Drift Gillnet, Purse Seine, Troll
Salmon, Atlantic Avoid: Avoid these products for now. These fish come from sources that are overfished or fished or farmed in ways that harm the environment. Farmed Salmon, Sake Worldwide Farmed
Salmon, Atlantic: Verlasso (R) 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. Verlasso (R) Chile Farmed
Salmon, Coho 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. Sake, Silver Salmon Canadian Pacific Wild
Salmon, Coho Best Choice: These fish are abundant, well managed and fished or farmed in environmentally friendly ways. Sake, Silver Salmon U.S. Farmed in Tank Systems


Salmon, Wild, Alaska

Fishery management is especially important for salmon as these fish require freshwater and ocean habitats to survive. Wild-caught salmon from Alaska is considered a "Best Choice" and the majority is certified as sustainable to the standard of the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC).

Consumer Note

Buyer beware! Different species of salmon are sold under many market names - and several are now available from both farmed and wild sources. Be sure to use your pocket guide to find the "Best Choices." Salmon is known as sake when prepared for sushi.

Summary

Pacific salmon in Alaska is among the most intensively managed species in the world, with excellent monitoring of both the fish populations and the fishery.

Alaskan salmon dominates the West Coast salmon market. Over the past 20 years, Alaska has landed roughly 10 times as much salmon as California, Oregon and Washington combined.

Freshwater habitats in Alaska have remained relatively pristine, and salmon originating in Alaska does not face the same damming, deforestation and development challenges as those in California and the Pacific Northwest. The current abundance of Alaska salmon and its habitat reflects the success of the state's management practices.

For these reasons, wild-caught salmon from Alaska is rated as a "Best Choice."


Recipe Alternatives
Seafood Watch recommends wild-caught salmon from Alaska, California, Oregon and Washington as these are ocean-friendly choices. “Avoid” salmon farmed in open net pens. Salmon farmed on land in “closed” or “contained” farms is a viable alternative that points the way to a more environmentally-friendly future for salmon farming.

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