U.S. grocery chain Whole Foods Market said it would change its offerings of seafood to reflect stricter environmentally-friendly choices.
The national chain said it would stop buying seafood that is either over-fished or caught by methods that inadvertently harm other species, the Los Angeles Times reported Tuesday.
The industry uses a color coded system with ratings determined by the Blue Ocean Institute and the Monterey Bay Aquarium, the Times reported.
Red-rated refers to fish that are either over-fished or caught by methods deemed harmful to other species. Yellow-rated is, essentially, a warning that indicates there are questions about the capture or sustainability of a species. A green label indicates the fish is deemed to have a sustainable population and is caught in "environmentally friendly ways."
The grocery chain said it would stop buying red-rated seafood. That means, it would no longer buy Atlantic halibut, gray sole and skate, but it would buy Pacific halibut and swordfish caught by harpoon, the Times said.
"Together with our shoppers and vendor partners, we hope to spark a sea change to reverse overfishing and reduce bycatch," said David Pilat, Whole Foods' global seafood buyer in a statement.
Whole Foods customers will have "the peace of mind that they are doing their part to ensure fish for future generations," he said.