Consumers 'prioritise sustainability over price and brand when buying seafood'

UK shoppers are more concerned about sustainability than price and brand when buying seafood and are willing to pay more for certified products, a survey has found.

The poll for the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) found 52% of consumers are willing to pay more - up to 11% - for MSC-labelled products, and more than three quarters (77%) believe shoppers should only consume seafood from sustainable sources in order to protect the oceans.

The attitude extends across the age groups, with two thirds (69%) of 18 to 34-year-olds seeking out traceable fish and 83% of older shoppers believe consumers need to eat only sustainable seafood.

A third of shoppers (34%) said they buy more eco-labelled seafood now than they did a year ago.

A recent global impacts study by the MSC showed that 94% of 281 certified fisheries had made at least one additional improvement to strengthen or further monitor their sustainability.

Toby Middleton, UK programme director for MSC, said: "It's incredibly encouraging to see that shoppers are choosing sustainability over brand and particularly price when buying seafood.

"The good news is that as more and more supermarkets and fish and chip shops adopt MSC certification, shoppers will have a greater range of sustainable brands to choose from to suit all pockets - from Lidl to Selfridges."

:: GlobeScan surveyed 16,000 consumers in 21 countries, 1,000 of them in the UK, online in January and February.

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