SEVERAL leading food businesses have signed up to WWF's new “Tuna Market Manifesto” pledging not to buy or sell Atlantic and Mediterranean bluefin tuna, which spawns in Balearic waters, in a move aimed at helping the species recover from overfishing.

The companies, including Pret a Manger and sushi restaurant chain Moshi Moshi, have joined WWF in calling on governments, currently meeting for key talks of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas (ICCAT) in Paris, to take urgent action and help the species to recover. “The Tuna Market Manifesto”, presented yesterday to ICCAT chairman Fabio Hazin during tuna management discussions in Paris, states that the businesses will give Atlantic bluefin tuna a break until fishing is being sustainably managed by ICCAT and the species population is recovering. Mismanagement and overfishing – especially in the Mediteranean Sea – have led to decades of overexploitation and brought eastern Atlantic bluefin tuna, admired by sushi lovers, to the brink of collapse, said WWF. “The global business world is standing up for sustainable seafood and in increasing numbers is refusing to trade in endangered Atlantic and Mediterranean bluefin tuna until the fishery is being managed in a responsible manner and the species is recovering,” said Dr Sergi Tudela, head of fisheries at WWF Mediterranean. “WWF applauds this bold stance from the private sector and encourages other businesses to sign up.” While ICCAT failed for four decades to manage the constantly shrinking tuna stocks, businesses including Carrefour, Ikea, Sodexo, famous sushi restaurant chains Itsu and Moshi Moshi – and many others – have decided to make that step themselves. “The Carrefour Group will not sell Atlantic bluefin tuna in any of its outlets around the world until the fisheries are being managed in a way that will allow the tuna to recover,” said Hervé Gomichon, quality manager at the Carrefour Group. “Our interest is in responsible commerce – conducting business in a sustainable way that does not deplete natural resources but allows future generations to live on the planet comfortably. Carrefour joins WWF in urging ICCAT to put in place drastic measures that will enable a moderate consumption of Atlantic bluefin tuna long into the future.”


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