Food & dining

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New England Aquarium’s approved fish list

Some of the fish on display at chef Jeremy Sewall’s "Know your Fish" seminar.
Essdras M Suarez/ Globe Staff
Some of the fish on display at chef Jeremy Sewall’s "Know your Fish" seminar at the Island Creek Oyster Bar.

Chefs and those in the seafood industry say that seafood watch lists put out by various organizations, naming some species as ocean-friendly, should be viewed with a grain of salt. They do not tell the whole story. When the New England Aquarium put one together a couple of years ago, they asked Kim Marden, of Captain Marden’s Seafood in Wellesley, for his advice.

“I said, ‘I don’t agree with what’s on it. Out of the six or seven species, I agree with one. If you’re looking for someone to say, this is great, you called the wrong guy,’ ’’ Marden told them. “Their minds were already made up.’’

There’s very little consensus about sustainable seafood. Here is a partial list that gets the New England Aquarium’s seal of approval.



Bluefish (New England)

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Cod, Pacific (US hook-caught)

Haddock (longline, New England)

Halibut (Pacific)

Mackerel (New England)


Mahimahi (US)

Pollock (Alaska)

Salmon (Alaska)

Sardines (Pacific)

Squid (US)



Arctic char (Iceland, Norway, Canada, US)

Barramundi (New England)

Bay scallops (New England)

Catfish (US)

Clams, hard-shell (New England)

Mussels, blue


Rainbow trout (US)

Shrimp, white (US)

Striped bass, hybrid

Sturgeon (US)

Tilapia (US, South and Central America)

Source: New England Aquarium