Sustainable sourcing is important for seafood supply

Mackerel has been put back on the list of consumable fish by the Marine Conservation Society (MCS) in the United Kingdom. Consumers can occasionally eat mackerel without endangering the species as long as it is sustainably sourced, The Guardian reported. The MCS recommended fish caught by hand-line or that was raised in sustainable fisheries. Consumers were cautioned not to buy mackerel originating in Iceland and the Faroe Islands because fishers had increased quotas too much to maintain sustainable practices.

The fish's rating was revised because the restrictions were increasing mackerel stocks. The MCS advised consumers to purchase fish from local sources. Hand-lining is a labor intensive fishing method and results in high quality catches. Fish caught by unsustainable methods or from poorly managed fisheries drive down the price and quality of the fish available in the market. 

Seafood is complex to purchase because availability and price of particular fish tend to fluctuate, according to Nation's Restaurant News, a food service publication. Restaurant owners may have to vary menus based on the availability of fish. Chefs may need to work with their seafood suppliers to get the best quality fish since strategic sourcing can be complicated. Seafood stock can be impacted by bad weather and changing ocean temperatures, so restaurant managers may need to make adjustments based on the supply. 

There has been a trend of origin labeling for seafood, and it can boost restaurant sales, NRN stated. Consumers have expressed growing interest in where food comes from, and labeling makes them feel seafood is coming from a high-quality source, particularly if the fish was caught locally. Seafood sourcing from a single local supplier may be easier for smaller chains. Large restaurants and retailers may not be able to meet demand with one supplier.

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