Is your seabass dolphin friendly? New Good Fish Guide ratings out now

Erin O'Neill By: Erin O'Neill
Date posted: 6 October 2020

Our latest Good Fish Guide ratings are out today and we’re sad to see seabass from the Southern Bay of Biscay entering our red rated ‘Fish to Avoid’ list.

When you hear the term ‘dolphin friendly’ it’s most likely you think of tins of tuna. But why do we reserve our interest in dolphin friendly seafood for just tuna?

Charlotte Coombes,
Good Fish Guide Manager

This comes after increasing concern for local dolphin and harbour porpoise populations, which are being accidentally caught by boats using static nets and pelagic trawls that are fishing for seabass in the area.

Thousands of dolphins and porpoises have been killed as bycatch in the Southern Bay of Biscay over the years. The problem is so severe that local populations may soon disappear completely from the area.

Charlotte Coombes, our Good Fish Guide Manager said: “When you hear the term ‘dolphin friendly’ it’s most likely you think of tins of tuna. But why do we reserve our interest in dolphin friendly seafood for just tuna? By checking how seafood is caught, and getting familiar with different catch methods, you can ensure that all of your seafood is dolphin friendly, with or without the logo!”

A lot of seabass consumed in the UK is actually farmed, which is a better choice than many wild-caught options. Even so, there is no green rated ‘Best Choice’ for seabass, wild or farmed, so shoppers are urged to think before they buy, and make sure they know where their bass is from.

Other big moves in our new ratings update include welcoming farmed King and Queen scallops onto the green rated, ‘Best Choice’ list.

Dover sole from the eastern English Channel and the Irish Sea also join the green rated, ‘Best Choice’ list, with population sizes slowly growing – although sole caught in these areas by beam trawling, a more damaging fishing method, is still amber rated, so remember to check the labels on pack.

If you eat seafood use our Good Fish Guide to find the most sustainable options by looking at what species it is, where it was caught or farmed, and how.

Top Swaps Oct 2020

Actions you can take