Good Fish Guide

Your guide to sustainable seafood


You can play a key role in securing the future of our seas and marine wildlife by making more environmentally responsible choices when buying seafood.

Our seas face a wide range of threats. Climate change, pollution, habitat and biodiversity loss are all impacting our seas; plus 90% of global fish stocks are either fully or over-exploited. All these factors combined mean that urgent action is needed to restore the health of our seas. Fish farming (aquaculture) is rapidly expanding to meet increasing demand for seafood, but if this is done badly it can also damage the environment and exacerbate these other problems.

Use the Good Fish Guide to find out which fish are the most sustainable (Green rated), and which are the least sustainable (Red rated). Make the right choice and reduce your impact – every purchase matters! Find out more about our seafood work, including how we develop our seafood ratings, plus sustainable seafood recipes and more.

Our seafood work

 
 
You searched for "fish to avoid"
Showing 1 - 15 of 65 species.
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Anchovy, Peruvian, anchovies

Engraulis ringens

They are small green fish with a silver stripe that gives them a bluish hue. A relative of the herring, they are a short-lived, schooling fish feeding on small fry (recently hatched fish) and plankton at the bottom of the food-chain.

Picture of Anchovy, Peruvian,anchovies
Sustainability rating: five info
Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Purse seine
Capture area — South East Pacific (FAO 87)
Stock area — Chile
Stock detail — Chile - Small Pelagic Fishery Regions V - X
Rating: five info
Full details

Bream, Black or porgy or seabream

Spondyliosoma cantharus

Seabream are a group of compact, medium-sized fishes known as Sparidae. Their firm white meat is similar in taste and texture to bass and is ideal for grilling, steaming, baking and pan-frying whole. Black bream or porgy are commonly found Read more

Picture of Bream, Black or porgy or seabream
Sustainability rating: five info
Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Demersal otter trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — English Channel
Stock detail — All areas except Sussex IFCA district
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Pelagic trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — English Channel
Stock detail — All areas except Sussex IFCA district
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Gill or fixed net
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — English Channel
Stock detail — All areas except Sussex IFCA district
Rating: five info
Full details

Clam, Razor, clams

Solen spp.

Clams are versatile shellfish which you should only eat if they are from farmed sources (e.g. Manila or American hardshell clams) or harvested from the wild (e.g. carpet or razor clams) using sustainable manual methods such as hand Read more

Picture of Clam, Razor, clams
Sustainability rating: five info
Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Electrical fishing
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — England
Stock detail — North West IFCA district only
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Electrical fishing
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Scotland
Stock detail — All Areas
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Dredge
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — England
Stock detail — North West IFCA district only
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Dredge
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Scotland
Stock detail — All Areas
Rating: five info
Full details

Cockle, cockles

Cerastoderma edule

Best boiled then seasoned with malt vinegar and pepper, they are often pickled but also sold in a sealed packet to eat on the go. A traditional Welsh breakfast is cockles fried with bacon and served with laver bread. Cockles have Read more

Sustainability rating: five info
Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Suction dredge
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — England
Stock detail — Kent & Essex IFCA district (outside the TECFO area)
Rating: five info
Full details

Cod, Atlantic Cod

Gadus morhua

There are a many different Atlantic cod populations and whilst some are being well managed and are in a healthy state, many others are in a poor state, particularly around the UK. Many of the well managed fisheries are certified as Read more

Picture of Cod, Atlantic Cod
Sustainability rating: five info
Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Demersal otter trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Baltic Sea (West)
Stock detail — 3d.22-24
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Demersal otter trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Rockall
Stock detail — 6b
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Demersal otter trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Celtic Seas (southern), Western English Channel
Stock detail — 7e-k
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Gill or fixed net
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — North Sea, eastern English Channel, Skagerrak
Stock detail — 4, 7d, 3a.20
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Gill or fixed net
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Baltic Sea (West)
Stock detail — 3d.22-24
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Gill or fixed net
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Kattegat
Stock detail — 3a.21
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Demersal otter trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Kattegat
Stock detail — 3a.21
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Demersal otter trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — North Sea, eastern English Channel, Skagerrak
Stock detail — 4, 7d, 3a.20
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Demersal seine
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Kattegat
Stock detail — 3a.21
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — All
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Norwegian Coast
Stock detail — 1, 2
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Gill or fixed net
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Celtic Seas (southern), Western English Channel
Stock detail — 7e-k
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Beam trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Celtic Seas (southern), Western English Channel
Stock detail — 7e-k
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Demersal otter trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — West of Scotland
Stock detail — 6a
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Poundnet
Capture area — North West Atlantic (FAO 21)
Stock area — West Greenland
Stock detail — NAFO Sub area 1
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Handline
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Cornwall
Stock detail — 7e, 7f, 7g, 7h
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Demersal otter trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Cornwall
Stock detail — 7e, 7f, 7g, 7h
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Gill or fixed net
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Cornwall
Stock detail — 7e, 7f, 7g, 7h
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Beam trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Cornwall
Stock detail — 7e, 7f, 7g, 7h
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Demersal otter trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — North Sea, eastern English Channel, Skagerrak
Stock detail — 4, 7d, 3a.20
Certification — Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) - Suspended
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Demersal otter trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Baltic Sea (East)
Stock detail — 3d.24-32
Rating: five info
Full details

Crawfish

Palinurus elephas

Picture of Crawfish
Sustainability rating: five info
Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Gill or fixed net
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Cornwall
Stock detail — 7e, 7f, 7g, 7h
Rating: five info
Full details

Cuttlefish

Sepia officinalis

Picture of Cuttlefish
Sustainability rating: five info
Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Demersal otter trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Cornwall
Stock detail — 7e, 7f, 7g, 7h
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Beam Trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Cornwall
Stock detail — 7e, 7f, 7g, 7h
Rating: five info
Full details

Devil fish, Giant Devil ray

Mobula mobular

Sharks and rays are found in all the worlds oceans, from the poles to the tropics to shallow water coral reefs to water over 3,000m deep. Sharks, skates and rays are fish but unlike bony fish (teleosts), they have a cartilaginous Read more

Picture of Devil fish, Giant Devil ray
Sustainability rating: five info
Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — All applicable methods
Capture area — Mediterranean (FAO 37)
Stock area — All Areas
Stock detail — All Areas
Rating: five info
Full details

Eel, Conger

Conger conger

Conger eels are very susceptible to fishing pressure. Avoid eating.

Picture of Eel, Conger
Sustainability rating: five info
Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — All applicable methods
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — All Areas
Stock detail
Rating: five info
Full details

Eel, European (Caught at sea)

Anguilla anguilla

Eels are exploited in all life stages and those that are fished do not have the chance to breed. European eel populations are at an all time low. Their status remains critical and urgent action is needed to recover the stock. Scientists Read more

Picture of Eel, European (Caught at sea)
Sustainability rating: five info
Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — All applicable methods
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — All Areas
Stock detail — All Areas
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — All applicable methods
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Cornwall
Stock detail — 7e, 7f, 7g, 7h
Rating: five info
Full details

Eel, European (Farmed)

Anguilla anguilla

Eels are exploited in all life stages and those that are fished do not have the chance to breed. European eel populations are at an all time low. Their status remains critical and urgent action is needed to recover the stock. Scientists Read more

Picture of Eel, European (Farmed)
Sustainability rating: five info
Method of production — Farmed
Production country — Europe
Production method — Recirculating system
Rating: five info
Full details

Grouper

Epinephelus spp.

The combination of facts for grouper are that they are: largely overfished; assessed as vulnerable to highly vulnerable to overfishing; not managed; and often caught with fishing methods detrimental to their vulnerable reef habitat, makes Read more

Picture of Grouper
Sustainability rating: five info
Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — All applicable methods
Capture area — Worldwide (FAO All Areas)
Stock area — All Areas
Stock detail
Rating: five info
Full details

Guitarfish

Rhinobatos rhinobatos

Sharks and rays are found in all the worlds oceans, from the poles to the tropics to shallow water coral reefs to water over 3,000m deep. The Bull Shark (Carcharhinus leucas) is unusual as it is able to enter fresh water river systems Read more

Picture of Guitarfish
Sustainability rating: five info
Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — All applicable methods
Capture area — Mediterranean (FAO 37) and Eastern Atlantic (FAO 34)
Stock area — All Areas
Stock detail — All Areas
Rating: five info
Full details

Gurnard, Yellow or Tub

Triglia or Chelidonichthys lucerna

Quite a bony fish and should be bought with fins and skin removed. It's not got a strong flavour and so is often used in soups or stock or stuffed. Gurnards belong to a family of fish known as 'sea robins'. There are three common varieties Read more

Picture of Gurnard, Yellow or Tub
Sustainability rating: five info
Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Gill or fixed net
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — All Areas
Stock detail — 1 to 9
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Demersal otter trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — All Areas
Stock detail — 1 to 9
Rating: five info
Full details

Halibut, Atlantic (Caught at sea)

Hippoglossus hippoglossus

Atlantic halibut can grow up to 8ft long and 4ft wide and is the largest and longest lived of all flatfish. The species is heavily overfished and listed as an Endangered species so avoid eating. Levels of mercury can be very high in large Read more

Picture of Halibut, Atlantic (Caught at sea)
Sustainability rating: five info
Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Gill or fixed net
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — All Areas
Stock detail — 1 to 14
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Demersal otter trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Norway
Stock detail — Norway
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Gill or fixed net
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Norway
Stock detail — Norway
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Longline
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — Norway
Stock detail — Norway
Rating: five info
Full details

Method of production — Caught at sea
Capture method — Demersal otter trawl
Capture area — North East Atlantic (FAO 27)
Stock area — All Areas
Stock detail — 1 to 14
Rating: five info
Full details

Showing 1 - 15 of 65 species.
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