Whole Foods Bans Red-Rated Fish (WFM)

March 30, 2012 by Jon C. Ogg

Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ: WFM) has always tried to be the most ecologically friendly grocer of all the big chains.  Now it is taking steps to go further into protecting fish by eliminating fish sales of a few fish that are classified as “red-rated wild-caught fish” in its seafood departments. The news is said to make Whole Foods Market the first national grocer to stop selling red-rated seafood, which is a fish species suffering from overfishing or that current fishing methods harm other marine life or habitats.

As of April 22, 2012 Atlantic halibut, grey sole, skate, and others will no longer be available. The company has noted that some stores have already eliminated these species from their cases and for years it has not sold other species with sustainability concerns such as orange roughy and bluefin tuna.   The company noted that replacement fish are MSC-certified Pacific halibut and yellow-rated Dover sole and Atlantic flounder.

Today’s move is not one which will adversely impact sales in any meaningful way.