Tesco tuna brand criticised by Greenpeace
Tesco has been criticised by Greenpeace for selling 'dirty tuna'.
Campaigners say that the company's tinned tuna sold under the Oriental and Pacific (O&P) brand is caught using large nets. This is despite Tesco pledging in 2012 that all its own brand tuna was sustainably caught.
These nets, also known as purse seines, involve creating a large circular 'net wall' around shoals of fish, and closing or 'pursing' the bottom to capture the fish.
This method of capture can result in other 'non-target' species being caught. For example, the smallest species of tuna - Skipjack tuna - often shoal with yellow fin tuna, sharks, rays, turtles and other species.
The owner of the O&P brand, LDH, released a statement saying: “At least 85% of the tuna we sell is fished using the pole and line method; our O&P brand skipjack tuna is caught using the purse seine fishing method, which accounts for 63% of all tuna caught around the globe”.
Greenpeace UK Oceans Campaigner, Ariana Densham, said: "Morrisons joins Sainsbury's as a market leader on tuna sustainability. They have eliminated unsustainable tuna from their products, which is great news for sharks, turtles and rays...If Tesco wants to catch up with the front runners and win back consumer confidence, they must take this dirty tuna off their shelves today."
Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall also called for Tesco to take the O&P brand off its shelves.
Tesco commented on Greenpeace's claims, stating they were "simply wrong" and that the company "totally refutes" the claims.
To find out more about which seafood is considered 'sustainable', visit Greenpeace''s website.
For more on tinned tuna see our guide to tinned tuna.
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