By Tiffany Hsu
10:56 AM PST, January 24, 2013
McDonald’s, one of the largest single buyers of fish in the country, said all of its Filet-O-Fish sandwiches and Fish McBites snacks will be made of Alaskan Pollack sustainably fished in the wild.
And the company is willing to pay to prove it.
The fast-food giant will pay annual fees and royalties to the Marine Stewardship Council for the right to slap the group’s so-called ecolabel on its product packaging in its 14,000 stores nationwide.
Mega-retailers such as Wal-Mart, Whole Foods and Walgreens already carry products bearing the blue label. But McDonald’s said it will be the first national restaurant chain to do so, starting in February.
The Marine Stewardship Council awards the label to seafood products that meet its standards on fish stock health, fishery impact on the surrounding ecosystem and fishery management system.
Restaurant chains such as McDonald’s, Burger King and Carl’s Jr. have recently declared their dedication to more conscientious food sourcing strategies, shunning pork originating in gestation crates, touting their use of cage-free eggs and cutting ties with factory farms linked to animal abuse.
Earlier this week, IHOP and Applebee’s owner Dine Equity pledged to eliminate gestation crates from its pork supply chain. The Glendale-based company has more than 3,400 IHOP and Applebee’s locations nationwide.
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