Tony Cooke is Director of Government Relations for Sodexo, having previously worked as programme director for the Year of Food and Farming campaign run by the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra). Sodexo in the UK and Ireland employs around 43,000 people, and provides on-site services to clients at over 2,300 locations in the corporate, healthcare, education, leisure and defence sectors.
Tony has worked with Sodexo during an important time in which the company, a specialist in foodservice, has undertaken certification of its products through Red Tractor farm assurance and also Marine Stewardship Council Chain of Custody certification, to enable the company to serve and promote certified sustainable fish.
As Tony explains, "Our restaurants are now Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified; meaning that wherever you see the MSC ecolabel, fish has been sourced from sustainable fisheries. So now our fish dishes are as good for the ocean as they are for you."
More than one million people in the UK will be offered MSC certified sustainable fish in workplace restaurants, schools, hospitals and defence sites. In a world-first, Sodexo had all of its restaurants and cafés certified to serve Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified sustainable fish. MSC ecolabelled fish will be available in around a thousand sites ranging from Manchester Royal Infirmary, the Co-operative and Eton College to primary schools in Wiltshire, Catterick Garrison, Blenheim Palace, the Cabinet War Rooms, the HMS Belfast and the Chelsea Flower Show.
Hannah Arcaro, UK Foodservice Manager at the MSC said: “What Sodexo has achieved is nothing less than amazing. Serving MSC certified sustainable fish at nearly a thousand sites will introduce a huge cross-section of British consumers to the issues around overfishing and how they can be part of the solution. By helping to reward the certified fisheries around the world, who have proven that they are fishing sustainably, Sodexo and its customers will be helping to transform the seafood market to a sustainable basis.”
Michelle Hanson, Commercial Director, for Sodexo UK & Ireland, said: "This was an ambitious target that we set ourselves as part of the Better Tomorrow Plan, our sustainability strategy to 2020. Like most people, we were alarmed to hear about declining fish stocks. Through MSC certification, we believe we are making a real difference in helping to protect the world's fish stocks."
Sustainable Fish City is a Sustain campaign