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    Environmental Groups Eye Whole Foods' Seafood Purchasing Standards

    Two nonprofit groups praised the natural market leader, but suggested improvements are in order.

    The Environmental Law Institute and The Ocean Foundation said they recently reviewed farmed seafood purchasing standards of Whole Foods Markets--and while they liked much of what they saw, the two organizations also said the chain ought to increase the transparency of the process.

    The Austin, Texas-based super-natural chain said in July that it had established enhanced standards for the farmed seafood sold in its stores. The grocer said its guidelines, aimed at reducing environmental impact of production, cover the purchase of farmed salmon, other finfish, and shrimp.

    The reviewing nonprofit groups praised Whole Foods for publishing its standards and recommended steps for the grocer to "improve the credibility of its quality standards."

    The review suggested Whole Foods address all impacts of production to "ensure that its existing standards are fully sustainable" and comply with international standards. The groups suggested additional steps to help Whole Foods increase transparency and extend its involvement to stakeholders, including creating a public forum for stakeholder feedback.

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