I heard that tuna is disseaparing, I "verified" on the Greenpeace link. It seems hard to believe it, is this for real? The "pig" of the oceans, one of the most common, one of the favourites? Or it's about some subspiecies? If so, what cans to avoid?
1"The biggest tuna fishery in terms of volume is skipjack - the tuna most likely to end up in cans. While skipjack is not yet overfished, if fishing continues at current rates it won't be able to sustain itself.", but ... it's Greenpeace– LiviuDec 30, 2013 at 20:56
1I don't eat tuna for a variety of reasons but the one that might mean the most to you would be that the ocean has become man's cess pool, pollution, oil, radiation etc and these toxins accumulate in the animals at the top of the food chain... just like DDT accumulated in eagles. None for me thanks.– hortstuJan 11, 2014 at 18:52
1@hortstu By developing your reasoning I can conclude that you eat only organic food, am I right :p? Well, most people eat Mc Donald's and this question is prayer for them to avoid tuna.– LiviuJan 13, 2014 at 12:57
1Well maybe a few more of the McDonalds eaters will not feed it to their kids b/c of the reason I provided. If it's just one child that doesn't get fed that crap than it was worth my time commenting. As to organics and local, I eat them as much as I can afford and find. However your reasoning doesn't apply because more toxins accumulate in organisms higher up the food chain and plants are near the bottom of the food chain so in most case they don't have a fraction of the crap you'd find in tuna.– hortstuJan 13, 2014 at 16:40
2The fact that Tuna is an endangered species is another great reason not to eat it... I wasn't giving "being vegan" as the reason to not eat tuna but my reason for not eating CAFO animals. The reason I'm vegan is for sustainability and to avoid cruelty, I'm not being sustainable because I want to be vegan, so I do think it applies... Anyway of you want people to avoid tuna shouldn't you give them all the good (for the sake of this forum) sustainability reasons not to? There are people that would kill and eat tuna if it was one of the last two on earth.– hortstuJan 14, 2014 at 4:50
Here in The Netherlands we have the 'Viswijzer' (link is to Dutch version only). It is an index where you can lookup which types of fish you can buy just fine and which types you should not buy because they are endangered and/or not caught sustainably. I'm not sure about the exact criteria they have but according to this index:
- Albacore Tuna (white) from the Pacific with MSC-certification
- Skipjack Tuna from the Pacific with MSC-certification
- Skipjack Tuna caught by handline* in the Pacific
ORANGE (poor choice):
- White Tuna caught by handline* in the Atlantic
- Yellowfin Tuna caught by handline* in the Pacific, Indian and Atlantic Ocean
- Skipjack Tuna caught by handline* in the Pacific and Indian Ocean and Indonesia
RED (don't buy)
- White Tuna caught (other methods) in the Atlantic, Pacific or Mediterranean
- Yellowfin Tuna caught (other methods) in the Atlantic, Pacific or Indian Ocean.
- Skipjack Tuna caught (other methods) in the Indian and Eastern Atlantic Ocean.
* with 'handline' they mean small-scale and selective fishing using fishing rod, jigging or trolling
UPDATE: An alternative to MSC-certified tuna is 'fishless tuna'. In The Netherlands it is made by a company called 'Vegetarian Butcher'. I just tried it this week. It's soy-based, tastes suprisingly good, very much like tuna. A quick google search showed that there are also other companies who sell something similar.
1I think the English language equivalent is here: fishonline.org/ratings. The trouble is that you can't find what subspicies they use in pizza or sandwiches, maybe the main food source for tuna, I'll try to look more closely to the cans. Jan 2, 2014 at 16:56
It has been my experience that in all pizzas and most sandwiches they use cheap tuna that falls in the orange or red category. This may be different where you live, but just ask in a restaurant or shop before you order.– THelperJan 3, 2014 at 8:35
So you are suggesting to avoid eating it all together. Jan 3, 2014 at 14:11
2So the MSC label seems to be an easy to follow rule and a final answer like "Don't eat tuna but only in the cans with the MSC label, avoid pizzas or sandwiches that cannot provide such information" is ok with you? Forgive me for trying to find a short simple answer, but it must be easy enough to follow for people not so interested in the matter. Jan 3, 2014 at 18:27
1I studied the tuna cans in some supermarket : no MSC certification, only 2 (from about 25 products) had a mention about the species: white and albacore. Jan 7, 2014 at 20:10
Please eat tuna only from the cans with MSC (Marine Stewardship Council) label, avoid pizzas or sandwiches that cannot provide such certification. (See the approved answer of @THelper (and the comments) for more details, this is the short answer!)
In north america we have Seachoice.org. They make a handy pocket guide. Yellowfin tuna is on the red (bad) list. But they say canned Albacore is ok.
2Interesting. It looks like the Seachoice guide is less strict than the Viswijzer, but it could also have something to do with the date it was created. Last update of de Seachoice guide is april 2012, that of the Viswijzer is spring 2013. BTW, the Seachoice guide says that canned Albacore is ok if it is from Canada or the US Pacific– THelperJan 15, 2014 at 8:27