MCS

The Marine Conservation Society (MCS) is the UK charity dedicated to caring for our seas, shores and wildlife.

MCS campaigns for clean seas and beaches, sustainable fisheries, protection of marine life and habitats, and the sensitive use of our marine resources for future generations.

Through education, community involvement and collaboration, MCS raises awareness of the many threats that face our seas and promotes individual, industry and government action to protect the marine environment.

MCS provides information and guidance on many aspects of marine conservation and produces the annual Good Beach Guide, the Good Fish Guide and www.fishonline.org on sustainable seafood, as well as promoting public participation in volunteer projects and surveys such as Beachwatch, Adopt-a-Beach and Basking Shark Watch.

Founded following Underwater Conservation Year in 1977, MCS has worked successfully to highlight issues of concern and threats to marine wildlife and the wider marine environment, bringing them to the attention of the public, media, politicians and Government agencies alike.

MCS involves thousands of volunteers in surveys and other projects, has a network of local supporters' groups, and works with other bodies of like-mind to achieve common goals.

MCS is a registered charity (No 1004005) and a company limited by guarantee.

MCS has given all species of fish a rating of 1 – 5.

Rating 1 and 2 are given to species that are safe to eat

Rating 3 and 4 indicates increasing levels of concern regarding the status of fish stock, or the environmental impact of the fishing method used to catch them

Rating 5 is given to fish that MCS recommends be avoided because they are overfished, vulnerable to exploitation, poorly managed and whose method of harvesting causes bycatch (capture of dolphins, sharks, seabirds and non target fish) and/or damage to the seabed

 ORGANICALLY FARMED FISH

Given below are a few excerpts from various websites that argue for organically farmed fish

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

'In organic fish farming, many of the pesticides, dyes and antibiotics widely used in conventional fish farming are not permitted and so these fish products are generally accepted to be credible organic products by both the soil association and consumers.'

'The fish will be swimming in the cleanest waters possible - unpolluted and away from main shipping lanes.'
 
 
 
The true cost of fish farming (NON-ORGANIC)
'Fish farming seems like a practical solution to the problem of overfishing. Fish farming, however, is the cause of many problems. In the UK, its salmon thats most closely associated with farming - and its shortcomings. Public demand for cheaper food means that farmed salmon are often kept, for financial reasons, very densely stocked, with huge numbers of fish crammed into very little space. In this state, the fish can more easily become diseased, and these diseases can spread to wild fish. Huge amounts of antibiotics are required to keep the fish moderately healthy.'
 
 
 
 
 
 
'However, from an animal welfare point of view, there is some controversy about allowing farmed fish to be labelled as ‘organic’. Organic principles demand that livestock (which includes fish) should be able to express its ‘natural’ behaviour pattern and be kept as close to natural stocking densities as possible.
This requirement can be satisfied for mussels without difficulty, and trout and many other freshwater fish are reared in large ponds/reservoirs at low stocking densities. The ‘natural’ density for salmon, however, is almost impossible to achieve, so it is doubtful that a truly organic salmon can ever be farmed.'

'We have overfished our seas dramatically over the past few years, and it's time to redress the balance. Organic fish has space to swim, feeds naturally, and is killed humanely.'