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Hy-Vee Inc. has transitioned 100 percent of its sushi to responsible sources, guaranteeing that all sushi prepared and sold in its 245 Midwestern stores will now contain seafood caught in an environmentally and socially responsible manner.
According to its recently updated Seafood Procurement Policy, Hy-Vee is committed to sourcing seafood in its fresh-made Nori Sushi bars and Hy-Vee Market Grille restaurants that's rated “green” or “yellow” by the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch program, certified to an environmental standard equivalent to these ratings, or in a time-bound improvement process.
“We work hard to provide the highest-quality options for our customers,” said Brett Bremser, EVP of perishables at Hy-Vee. “We enjoy offering Hy-Vee customers the option of Japanese cuisine with fresh seafood, but we must also safeguard the health of our oceans. We have made it a priority to integrate the concept of sustainable dining into our menu options and Nori Sushi brand.”
Hy-Vee’s goal is to offer sushi to its customers while maintaining “a solid commitment to responsible menu choices.”
Ahi tuna used in Hy-Vee's Nori Sushi is made with Seafood Watch green-rated, Fair Trade-certified yellowfin tuna. Tempura and ebi shrimp are from BAP 3 Star- and BAP 4 Star-certified sources. Salmon is Seafood Watch yellow-rated Verlasso salmon from Chile. Hy-Vee's surimi is from the Marine Stewardship Council-certified U.S. Alaska pollock fishery.
Hy-Vee’s updated Seafood Procurement Policy now also includes sustainable shelf-stable tuna. The policy was developed in partnership with FishWise, a nonprofit sustainable seafood consultancy that promotes the health and recovery of ecosystems through environmentally and socially responsible business practices.
“This announcement marks the achievement of another major milestone in Hy-Vee’s Responsible Choice seafood program,” said Kathleen Mullen-Ley, project director at Santa Ctuz, Calif.-based FishWise. “FishWise applauds Hy-Vee’s continued leadership in improving the sustainability and social responsibility of its seafood offerings. We are proud to be partnered with Hy-Vee and look forward to more exciting announcements in the future.”
West Des Moines, Iowa-based Hy-Vee Inc. is an employee-owned corporation operating more than 240 retail stores across eight Midwestern states.