April 26, 2009 by Kate Heyhoe · Comments Off
Green Star Review
Two microcannery brands of wild albacore tuna floated across our desks recently: Wild Planet and Wild Pacific Albacore brands have similar names, and both are small but unrelated canneries in the Pacific Northwest.
These days, knowing which fish species to eat can be confusing, even for the most informed good green citizen. Before your inner tuna alarms go off, rest assured these two brands get green stars from NewGreenBasics.com, and here’s why.
- Catch Method: Troll-caught, an environmentally friendly method (unlike longline fishing, whose bycatch-method destroys sea turtles, dolphins and endangered species)
- Sustainability: Albacore from U.S. waters is a Best Choice at Seafood Watch, provided they’re troll- or pole-caught. These populations are healthy and sustainable.
- Health: Low-mercury, high Omega 3 oils, good source of selenium (an antioxidant). These brands select smaller tuna; the smaller the fish the lower the mercury accumulation. They’re higher in Omega 3 oils than major commercial brands.
- Canning Process: Both brands cook their tuna only once, in the can, which retains flavor and texture. (Major commercial canneries cook the fish whole, then strip the meat, pack it in a can, and cook the can yet again, often adding water, broth or vegetable oil; nutrients, firmness, natural oils, and flavor are lost in the process.)
- Why we like them: Tastes like real food. Wild Planet Wild Albacore Tuna consists of hand-cut steaks, sashimi-grade, packed in the tuna’s natural oil with no liquid added (don’t drain the oil!). Wild Pacific Albacore packs theirs in tasty organic olive oil and sea salt.
- AND: Both brands use certified BPA-free cans, a rarity today and an action that helps earn them a New Green Basics Green Star.
Wild Planet tuna is available at Whole Foods, Targets, Ralph’s, Peyton’s, Kroger’s, Earth Fare, Coburg’s, Heinen’s, Wakefern’s, Andronico’s, and many smaller regional chains as well as many upscale specialty and natural stores around the country.
All US troll-caught albacore earn a green rating (best choice) from the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch Guide.