Consumers willing to change shopping habits to save the oceans

Posted: 8 June 2022 | | No comments yet

A global survey has found that shoppers will change buying habits to protect the world’s oceans, with four in ten Americans willing to buy sustainable seafood.


New findings released by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) show that consumers have a growing concern around the state of the world’s ocean, with many acknowledging that their buying habits can make a difference to this threat.

The independent survey of attitudes to seafood and ocean health – conducted by global insights and advisory consultancy, GlobeScan, in 23 countries with more than 25,000 people – found that almost 90 percent of respondents expressed concern about the state of the ocean.

As well as this, the findings show that there has been an increase from two years ago in seafood consumers who believe their choices can make a difference to the health of the ocean. Nearly two-thirds (62 percent) of US consumers surveyed believe that people should eat seafood from sustainable sources. This is a seven percent increase from the last time the survey was run in early 2020. US consumers’ top concerns about the ocean were pollution (59 percent), overfishing (41 percent), and climate change (38 percent).

The MSC claims that more than 60 percent of Americans believe that personal choices about eating seafood can make a difference in ocean health. Buying sustainable seafood is the most common action that American seafood consumers say they have taken to protect the ocean, with the MSC reporting that four in ten US seafood consumers are willing to buy more sustainable seafood, with one in five saying they have already made this change in the last year.

“When we take care of the ocean, the ocean takes care of us. The future health of the ocean is something we should all be concerned about, and the clear message is that more people than ever recognize that their choices can make a positive impact on ocean health,” said Erika Feller, regional director, Americas, at the MSC.

“We can all play a part in safeguarding the ocean’s biodiversity, global food supplies, and the livelihoods that depend upon them. Consumers, brands and retailers can be a powerful force for change by rewarding fishers who are fishing our ocean sustainably.”

The month of June is National Oceans Month in the US, and MSC is offering resources for consumers to make changes in their daily lives to support the health of people and the planet, including a series of short, social media illustrations on sustainable fishing, and a multimedia web page that allows users to dive into the ocean and learn specific examples of how fisheries are making a difference.

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