fish production

The expansion of its ASC-certified farmed fish sourcing will also lead to more sustainable basa in Birds Eye’s portfolio

Birds Eye owner Nomad Foods has signed new contracts to secure and increase the supply of Aquaculture Stewardship Council-certified farmed pangasius from 2023.

The frozen food giant said the contracts marked a significant milestone in its aim to source 100% of all fish and seafood from sustainable fishing or responsible farming by 2025. It is already the world’s largest branded purchaser of Marine Stewardship Council fish products, having worked with the organisation for over 25 years.

The expansion of its partnership with ASC-certified fisheries – Vinh Hoan, VDTG and Godaco Seafood – would enable the company to increase the range of sustainably-sourced fish species used in its products, Nomad said.

Birds Eye added that off the back of the partnership it was “aiming to bring basa to the market in 2023 and is currently in discussions with UK retailers about what this looks like”.

“We are progressing a number of partnerships aimed at developing and scaling emerging food technologies, in areas including cell-cultured fish and alternative proteins such as molluscs, to support wider efforts to safeguard the long-term availability of quality, affordable and great-tasting seafood that is healthy for people and sustainable for the planet,” said Stefan Descheemaeker, CEO of Nomad Foods.

Descheemaeker added it plans to support growing consumer demand for seafood due to the rising population.

“We are really pleased with Nomad Foods’ increased commitment to support sustainable aquaculture practices by incorporating more ASC-certified farmed fish into their product range,” said Chris Ninnes, CEO at the ASC.

“This is an important sign that environmentally sustainable and socially responsible production are key requirements for the aquaculture industry. We look forward to working more closely in the future.”