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Verlasso salmon has become the first ocean-raised farmed Atlantic salmon to receive the “Good Alternative” buy ranking from Monterey Bay Aquarium’s “Seafood Watch” program. Miami-based Verlasso is a participant in the new Seafood Watch External Assessment Model, which gives aquaculture and fishery operations the chance to receive a ranking by undergoing a stringent evaluation with a third-party assessor.
“Verlasso is devoted to finding comprehensive solutions for salmon aquaculture’s historic challenges,” said Scott Nichols, the company’s director. “We have collaborated with conservation leaders to help us on our journey to raise the best salmon with sustainable practices. The Good Alternative ranking is an exciting validation of our achievement.”
The farming practices that enabled Verlasso to earn the Seafood Watch buy ranking include an industry-leading “fish in fish out” (FIFO) ratio for both fish oil and fish meal; a requirement of 75 percent fewer wild-caught feeder fish than traditionally farmed salmon; raising salmon at half the pen density of traditionally farmed salmon; following a long fallowing cycle that gives the waters time to rejuvenate fully; and traceability of each fish to the farm where it was raised, through a gill tag QR code.
“The Seafood Watch assessment of Verlasso’s hatcheries, farms, processing plants and management took 16 months,” noted Seafood Watch director Jennifer Dianto Kemmerly. “Based on the extensive data we collected, which was vetted internally and by external peer reviewers, we’re confident that Verlasso is raising Atlantic salmon with environmentally responsible practices.”
“Seafood Watch is the best known, most trusted source in North America for information on environmentally responsible seafood choices,” added Nichols.
Since 1999, Seafood Watch has generated seafood recommendations and scientific reports that enable consumers and businesses to make more eco-friendly choices.