Does Eco-Labeling Make Ecological Sense?

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As part of the Luce Fellowship Program at UCSB, I worked with a group of fisheries scientists to assess the efficacy of eco-labeling on fish stock health. Fisheries around the world are collapsing, and identifying ways to sustainably consume fish is a major concern from both an ecological and economic standpoint. We found that eco-labeled certified stocks tend to have lower exploitation rates, thereby allowing for greater potential to rebuild stocks.

GutiƩrrez, N., S. Valencia, T. Branch, D. Agnew, A. Stern-Pirlot, A. Smith, C. Ninnes, R. Selden, J. Thorson, T. Essington, C. Costello, D. Hoggarth, P. Bianchi, S. Sistla, J. Cornejo, A. Larsen, S. Teck, O. Defeo, K. Sainsbury, R. Hilborn, K.. Baum, N. Williams. Eco-labels: A reliable indicator of stock status for seafood consumers. PLOS ONE 7(8): e43765.