High street restaurant chains rated

Richard Harrington By: Richard Harrington
Date posted: 29 June 2017

Our survey finds high street chains are falling short on seafood sustainability.

Restaurant

We shouldn’t have to leave our values and ethics behind when we eat out, and these blue fish rated restaurants are showing us that we don’t need to when we order the seafood from their menus.

Samuel Stone,
Head of Fisheries and Aquaculture
MCS

The Marine Conservation Society and Fish2fork assessed eleven restaurant chains to find out just how responsible they are when sourcing seafood.

We looked at the origins of the seafood served, the information provided to customers, and the approach to sourcing by the well-known chains to provide a rating for each outlet.

Yates, Giraffe, Little Chef, Slug and Lettuce and Wasabi failed to meet our minimum expectations on sustainability. Jamie’s Italian was the highest ranked outlet, closely followed by Brasserie Blanc, Loch Fyne, Las Iguanas, Strada and then TGI Fridays.

A lack of information to consumers remains one of the obstacles to diners who wish to eat seafood sustainably. Lack of transparency and information makes it impossible for the public to be sure the seafood being served is from well managed fisheries and fish farms.

King prawns and other tropical prawns seem to be the most problematic types of seafood used by restaurants and pubs. Restaurants can use certified supplies, but too often fail to do so, or fail to make it clear to customers what their source is.

Tim Glover, managing director of Fish2fork, says: “It’s not easy to ensure seafood is responsibly sourced, but it’s vital for the health of our seas and worth every penny invested by restaurants. Fish2fork ratings are on a scale of 5 red fish, the worst, to 5 blue fish, the best. With 5 red fish at the bottom of the scale, ratings improve, half a fish at a time, to rise to 4.5 red fish, 4 red fish and so on until 0.5 red fish. From here, ratings rise from 0.5 blue fish to 5 blue fish. June 2017 ratings: Blue fish (best) 2017 rating Red fish (worst) 2017 rating Jamie’s Italian 3.5 blue Yates 1 red Brasserie Blanc 3 blue Giraffe 1.5 red Las Iguanas 3 blue Little Chef 2 red Loch Fyne 3 blue Slug & Lettuce 3 red Strada 3 blue Wasabi 3 red TGI Friday 1.5 blue Of 32 of the nation’s most popular restaurant and pub chains rated since 2015, 13 have been given red fish ratings while 19 received blue fish ratings. MCS and Fish2fork are working to ensure that all seafood eaten or traded in the UK is from well managed fisheries and fish farms that have as little impact on the marine ecosystem as possible.”

Diners can now post up their own reviews of restaurants across the UK using DinerRatings, an online initiative available via fish2fork.com or on the MCS Good Fish Guide app which is available, free, on iphone and android.

Actions you can take

  1. Visit the Fish to Fork website
  2. Download the Good Fish Guide .pdf
  3. Download our guide showing how fish are caught
  4. View the Good Fish Guide online
  5. Download our award winning 'Good Fish Guide App'.
  6. Download our guide showing how fish are farmed

Did you know?…

A estimated £1.1 billion is spent on fish and chips every year in the UK

Over 3,000 sq km of our seabed is now protected from bottom-towed gear

21.7 million tonnes of wild caught fish are not for people to eat; almost 75% of this is to feed farmed fish

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