The Southern African Sustainable Seafood Initiative list makes it possible to eat guilt-free fish. This is good news for fish lovers who must make eco-friendly epicurean choices as demand outstrips supply and fish stocks are threatened with overfishing.

Did you know?

The south African national fish is the galjoen which is a red list endangered species.

Southern African Sustainable Seafood Initiative (SASSI) should be the first port of call for foodie fish lovers visiting South Africa.

Seafood is a chic, delicious and healthy menu choice, and South Africa is blessed with an abundance of rivers and seas, but many of our fish and seafood species have been harvested at unsustainable rates. Those wanting to buy fish and/or eat out in an eco-friendly manner should familiarise themselves with the sustainable seafood list on SASSI’s website.

Seafood is divided into green, orange and red colour-coded categories, or lists, to make identification easy for consumers. Green list species are from well-managed and populations such as hake; orange list species like kingklip and kabeljou are fragile and prone to over fishing; while red list fishes are endangered species (like white stump nose) which it's illegal to sell.

The sustainable seafood list suggests substitutes for fish and shellfish species that can no longer be ethically consumed and gives species with alternate or vernacular names.

When eating out, look for the SASSI restaurant participation scheme logo. SASSI aware restaurants undertake never to buy a red list species and to serve mainly green list species on their menus.

SASSI Champion venues go one step further and undertake to only sell green list seafood. Participating restaurants are listed on the SASSI web site and consumers are encouraged to contact SASSI should they feel that the participant is failing to live up to their eco-epicurean undertakings.

Travel tips & Planning info

Who to contact

Southern African Sustainable Seafood Initiative (SASSI)
Email: sassi@wwf.org.za

SASSI FishMS
SMS: +27 (0)79 499 8795

What will it cost

South African seafood is available at a range of eateries. A take-away fish and chip shop will charge approximately R50 for a piece of hake and chips. A fine dining restaurant could charge at least R200 for a seafood platter.

What to eat

Green list species such as yellowtail and hake are ideal. Orange list species such as kingklip should only be eaten occasionally; preferably not at all. Red list fish like galjoen, mussel cracker, wild caught abalone and rock cod are either illegal or endangered and should not be consumed, ever!