Coles is one of Australia’s leading retail businesses with brands including Coles and BI-LO Supermarkets, employing over 102,000 team members and operating over 2,200 outlets.

Coles partnered with WWF in 2011 to improve the sustainability of their seafood supply, and educate consumers about sustainable seafood choices, including Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) and Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC).

Globally, WWF works with major seafood buyers like Coles, using their purchasing power to secure seafood from sustainable sources, assess current supply chains and improve the overall management of the world’s fisheries.

As part of the Coles & WWF Sustainable Seafood Program, WWF will help to develop and implement Coles’ sustainable seafood strategy and action plans, provide technical expertise, assess the ecological sustainability of Coles’ seafood, and make recommendations for transitioning to more sustainable product. In addition WWF will make recommendations for continued fisheries improvement projects for all of Coles’ seafood suppliers and help to educate Coles’ staff.

Coles is taking a leadership role by making ambitious public commitments to sustainable seafood sourcing, investing in WWF’s marine and fisheries work, and engaging with industry and government for changes that will improve the sustainability of the seafood industry.

Coles Merchandise Director, John Durkan, said the agreement with WWF would reassure customers and support the Australian Government’s goals for a sustainable fishing industry: “Seafood is one of our fastest growing food categories because customers love to eat fresh fish and recognise the significant health benefits of doing so. But we know that customers are increasingly concerned about how and where their seafood is caught. By working with WWF we can help provide customers with better seafood choices which are not only great quality but also sustainably fished. Safeguarding vulnerable fish stocks now will also ensure that the Australian fishing industry can continue to thrive for generations to come.”

Click here for more information about Coles seafood and sustainability.

Coles has already taken action on

Industrial fisheries of Orange roughy. Emptying a mesh full of Orange roughy into a trawler. / ©: AFMA
Victorian range: WWF has assessed Coles’ entire Victorian wild caught range, ensuring all fresh seafood comes from more sustainable sources.

Coles is working with WWF to improve traceability across their entire range of seafood products.

Conservation: Coles is supporting WWF’s work to protect endangered sea turtles through investment in better gear technology, equipment and training for longline tuna fisheries.

Pole-and-line canned tuna: In August 2011 Coles launched their skipjack pole and line canned tuna. Skipjack is a more sustainable source of tuna and pole-and-line fishing significantly reduces bycatch of species such as sharks and turtles.

Canned salmon: All Coles Brand canned salmon comes from Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified sustainable fisheries and their products from the 2010 catching season will be labelled with the MSC logo.

Orange roughy: Last year Coles removed orange roughy from all their stores in response to concerns about sustainability.

Black tip shark:
Coles has stopped sourcing many shark species sold as flake, including black tip sharks.