Feeling crabby?

You don’t need to be a brain surgeon to choose sustainable fish, says MSC’s Ruth Westcott:

‘We’ve been hearing a lot about the impacts of fishing on our oceans recently, and I think it’s easy to feel like there’s not much we can do to help – fishing is happening miles out at sea and seems to be governed by distant and complicated rules and management systems. But…


The MSC (Marine Stewardship Council) works with fisheries, scientists and the whole fishing industry to improve fishing practices and recognise fisheries which are managing stocks sustainably. The MSC ecolabel on products shows that the seafood is from fishermen/fishers that have proven they meet strict standards for sustainability based on the most rigorous international scientific understanding. There are nearly 1,000 MSC-labelled products in the UK and you can find them in supermarkets, schools, restaurants and canteens (check out how your favourite retailer is doing here.)

At the moment Germany has the most MSC products anywhere in the world (over 3000!) so if you would like to eat fish with a clear conscience and see the UK take on Germany in the sustainable fish stakes – ask for MSC-certified fish when you shop and eat out.

A brilliant recipe to try with sustainable MSC certified fish…


• 600g potatoes, 5 medium-sized, cut into slices as thick as a pound coin
• 250g MSC certified Smoked Mackerel Fillets (If you want to go super cheap you could also use MSC certified kippers (smoked herring) – but Mackerel is a bit better because the flesh is firmer.))
• 2 bay leaves
• 400ml milk
• 300ml double cream
• 2 teaspoons wholegrain mustard

1. Turn on the oven to 190 degrees to preheat. Arrange the potatoes slices in a large oven proof dish. Tear up the smoked fish into bite-sized chunks and mix into the potatoes. Also tuck in the bay leaves.
2. Mix together the milk, cream and mustard, add a little salt and black pepper to season, and pour over the potato and mackerel mixture.
3. Cook in the oven for 45mins to an hour, until the top is browned and bubbling and the potatoes are tender when skewered with a knife.
4. Allow to cool a little, and serve with some spinachy salad, a wedge of lemon and some bread. Feel quite smug about cooking something sustainable which looks very impressive.

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