The Gulf of Maine Research Institute (GMRI) has announced a new program that makes it easy for seafood shoppers to identify responsibly harvested seafood from the Gulf of Maine region. Seafood suppliers earn the ability to use the Gulf of Maine Responsibly Harvested seal on products based on criteria that support the long-term health of the regions fisheries and fishing communities.
The seal will initially appear on cod, haddock, lobster, and northern shrimp products from the Gulf of Maine region at Hannaford and other retail stores. GMRI is in the process of assessing additional fisheries, with the goal of adding more seafood products to the program later this year.
In addition to finding the Gulf of Maine Responsibly Harvested seal in retail stores, consumers may also see the seal displayed at local restaurants and fish markets in Maine and throughout New England in the coming months.
"The seal lets consumers know that an objective science institution has verified responsible harvest and traced the product to the Gulf of Maine," said Jen Levin, GMRI's sustainable seafood program manager.
Scientists, environmental organizations, fishermen, processors, retailers, and restaurants contributed to the development of the requirements for use of the seal. The seal will assure consumers of the following:
* The product came from the clean, productive waters of the Gulf of Maine.
* The fishery is managed in a way that contributes to the long-term health of the resource.
* A portion of the proceeds contributes to GMRIs efforts to motivate and reward progress throughout the supply chain toward increased sustainability of Gulf of Maine fisheries.
Food retailers also benefit from providing information to consumers through an easy-to-spot seal.
For more information, visit www.gmri.org/seafood