Following a global commitment to sustainable fishing practices, McDonald’s Spain will be the first restaurant chain to include Pacifical skipjack tuna certified by the Marine Stewardship Council on their national menu. By January 2016, more than 490 restaurants will be offering MSC certified tuna in their “Tuna Mediterranean Salad”.
“At McDonald’s we have a goal to source all of our food and packaging from sustainable sources. As part of this, since 2013 all the white fish we serve in our restaurants globally in our Filet-o-fish sandwiches is sourced from MSC certified fisheries. In Spain, we are very proud to announce that the skipjack tuna, which we serve as part of our salad range, is now also MSC certified”, says Ignacio Blanco-Traba, Sr. Director Sustainable Sourcing at McDonald’s Corporation.
Pacifical, the marketing and sales organization for the PNA MSC certified tuna is supplying Frinsa del Noroeste, a leading European tuna processor located in Spain. McDonald’s MSC certified skipjack tuna is being caught in the waters of PNA nations in the Western Central Pacific Ocean. The fish is cooked and cleaned in a local Pacific-based processing facility, generating work and income to over one thousand local families. The MSC certified tuna is later transported to Spain, the largest fish processing nation in Europe, to be packed and delivered to McDonald’s.
“We congratulate McDonald’s for highlighting the importance of sustainable catching methods and taking a leading step within the fast food industry,” says Henk Brus, Managing Director of Pacifical. “Thanks to their commitment, millions of Spanish consumers will enjoy sustainably caught tuna and support the livelihoods of thousands of Pacific island families whose lives depend largely on tuna”.
Pacifical tuna is from nets set only on free swimming schools of adult skipjack tuna. Fishing on free schools reduces bycatch to the lowest level and ensures that the tuna caught is predominately of mature size. This means that bycatch of unwanted species and juvenile tuna is largely eliminated. Independent MSC trained onboard observers monitor and record all fishing operations according to the strictest MSC chain of custody (COC) standards. Our COC ensures that the fish was caught in a sustainable way and never mixed in with fish caught on FADs, or any other non-sustainable fishing method. Around 40% of the world supply of skipjack comes from the waters of the PNA, which makes the Pacific island nations the single most important source of raw material for the global tuna industry.
“In accordance with our sustainability policy, Frinsa favors the acquisition of tuna catches caught by environmentally friendly fishing methods, reducing bycatch of untargeted species and negative impacts on the overall ocean ecosystem”, says José Aller, Frinsa’s Head of Sustainability. “One of our principles is to guarantee the total traceability and chain of custody, from sea to plate.”
“In 2011 McDonald’s became a game changer in the white fish sector, with the announcement to source exclusively from fisheries that have met the rigorous MSC standard for environmental sustainability. This new commitment by McDonald’s Spain to introduce MSC certified tuna, is a strong positive signal for tuna fisheries that are working towards sustainability and recognition of the top performance of the PNA nations. I am delighted that millions of Iberian consumers will be able to enjoy McDonald’s salads with one of their favorite fish species, knowing that they are making a responsible choice” says Laura Rodríguez Zugasti, Program Director of Marine Stewardship Council in Spain and Portugal.