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Provigo recognized for its sustainable seafood achievements

In Quebec, the grocery chain feted for its seafood sustainability initiatives

Provigo has won a Quebec environmental achievement award for Loblaw’s Oceans for Tomorrow program, a Canada-wide awareness program to encourage the purchase of sustainable seafood. The grocer was awarded a 2013 Phénix de l'environnement prize. Created 15 years ago, the annual competition aims to promote the know-how of Quebec organizations in terms of environmental protection and sustainable development. Oceans for Tomorrow promotes sustainable seafood certified by the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) and awareness for sustainable fishing practices. Other partners in the initiative are WWF-Canada and national brands High Liner, Bento Sushi and Clearwater. Marie-Hélène Michaud, director of environmental affairs at Loblaw Companies, said results cannot be disclosed, but “we are pleased with the success of the program in terms of increased sales of MSC certified sustainable seafood products.” There has also been increased consumer awareness for the MSC eco-label, she said. While the Oceans for Tomorrow website notes that Loblaw has a commitment "to make sure all the seafood sold in our stores will come from sustainable sources by the end of 2013," Michaud could not confirm whether that goal will be reached. “We continue to assess the seafood in our stores and are making great strides towards our end of 2013 goal,” she said. “We will provide further visibility to our achievements at the end of the commitment.” She noted that earlier this year Loblaw became the first retailer in North America to bring to market Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC)- certified farmed products with its PC Blue Menu Tilapia. The ASC is an independent, not-for-profit organization that aims to be the leading global certification and labeling program for responsibly farmed seafood. Michaud said the grocer also introduced the first pet food in Canada with MSC- certified seafood ingredients through its PC and No Name cat food.

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