Sysco’s recently released 2022 Sustainability report highlights continued progress toward its new 2025 seafood sustainability commitments, announced last year in partnership with World Wildlife Fund (WWF). The company continues to make strides in meeting new commitments under its sustainable seafood program, which was expanded in 2021 to include Sysco US and Canada Broadline, and US Specialty company lines of business. In addition to setting higher targets for sourcing of certified seafood products, Sysco made strong commitments to protect endangered species, improve the traceability of its farmed shrimp products, and work to mitigate impacts on mangroves and other coastal ecosystems.
“We are extremely proud of our sustainable seafood commitment at Sysco and our long-term partnership with WWF that began in 2009 to advance the responsible production of seafood globally. Throughout this journey, we have increased the sustainability of our seafood offering and improved protections for species and habitats worldwide to ensure we are preserving seafood resources for future generations to come.
Our latest Sustainability Report shares our continued progress towards our 2025 sustainable seafood commitments. We’ve raised the bar for more sustainable and responsible seafood sourcing while advancing important work for seafood traceability and protecting endangered species and ecosystems. We look forward to continuing our partnership with WWF on these important issues that are central to our Sustainability strategy and its core goals of caring for people, sourcing products responsibly, and protecting the planet.”Neil Russell, Senior Vice President for Corporate Affairs and Chief Communications Officer at Sysco
Continuous Industry Leadership and Progress
According to Sysco’s latest report, as of December 31, 2021, the company had sourced approximately 94% of its volume for the U.S. and Canada top 15 wild-caught Portico Brand seafood species from fisheries that are Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified, in MSC assessment, or participating in a comprehensive fishery improvement project (FIP). Sysco notes that 80% of this volume is coming from MSC certified fisheries. Additionally, all of Sysco’s Portico Brand wild-caught cod, clams, pollock, haddock, salmon, whiting, and flounder were sourced from MSC certified fisheries. For shelf-stable tuna, Sysco reported that 100% of its suppliers in CY 2021 were International Seafood Sustainability Association (ISSA) participating companies, demonstrating a commitment to follow best practices for tuna conservation and management.
Sysco’s progress went beyond wild-caught seafood in 2021 with 98% of the companies volume for U.S. and Canada top-five farmed Portico Brand species coming from sources that are Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) certiﬁed, in ASC assessment, in a credible Aquaculture Improvement Project (AIP), or at a minimum BAP 2-star certiﬁed, with 20% of this volume coming from Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) certified farms.
Sysco also made important progress in implementing its commitment to advance the traceability of its Sysco Portico brand farmed shrimp products, and to address any potential impacts of deforestation or habitat conversion for mangroves and other coastal ecosystems in these supply chains. During CY 2021, Sysco worked with WWF and its farmed shrimp suppliers to collect data on the geographic locations of its source farms, map its global farmed shrimp supply chains, and utilize open-source satellite data to identify any potential historical impacts on coastal ecosystems. Sysco and WWF will use this baseline information to better target future monitoring for potential impacts.
“Sysco continues to demonstrate global leadership on seafood sustainability issues through its new 2025 commitments and its efforts to improve sourcing of more responsibly produced wild-caught and farmed seafood products, strengthen the traceability of its supply chains, and protect endangered species and vulnerable ecosystems such as mangroves and other coastal wetlands. WWF is proud to partner with Sysco on these important issues, and excited to continue working together over these next years to support industry efforts to improve responsible seafood practices in ways that support both people and planet.”Mark Richardson, Director of Market Data and Systems Transparency, WWF-US
Supporting Progress on the Water
Sysco reports that support for credible, time-bound fishery and aquaculture improvement projects continues to be a core feature of its responsible seafood program. During CY 2021, Sysco supported 9 different comprehensive FIPs around the world that are benchmarked against the MSC standard and working toward time-bound workplans to achieve certification – including the Peru jumbo squid, Ecuador mahi mahi, and Nicaragua spiny lobster fisheries.
In March 2022, Sysco also joined more than 70 industry and NGO representatives at SENA 2022 in Boston to celebrate the launch of the Peru Mahi Alliance, a coalition of Peruvian processing companies working to advance progress on the Peru mahi mahi FIP. The Peru mahi mahi fishery is one of the country’s most important artisanal fisheries, supporting the livelihoods of more than 4,200 fishers and generating between $90 and $100 million in income. Peru is the world’s leading producer of mahi mahi, sending over 70% of its exports to the U.S. mahi mahi is also a key link in the marine-based food chain, providing sustenance for ocean predators such as dolphins and sharks. Sysco has supported the FIP since its beginning in 2013. The FIP aims to improve the fishery’s performance so that it can meet the MSC standard – helping the fishery continue to thrive and support future generations.
For more information about Sysco’s 2022 Sustainability report, please visit: https://sysco.com/Sustainability/Corporate-Social-Responsibility.html