At J.J. McDonnell we recognize the increasingly important subject of Sustainability in our industry. Sustainability has become a ‘hot topic’ in this business over the years, but it’s been in our blood since 1945. We feel it is our duty to continually push ourselves to take a responsible approach toward purchasing our seafood products. Our commitment isn’t just about the purchases we make as a company, its about educating our customers and promoting the efforts of the suppliers and affiliations that make it their job to look out for the longevity of this industry.

Understanding sustainability is critical in creating a sound approach toward the subject. Sustainability is achieving a balance between meeting our needs today while ensuring thriving fisheries and fish farms (Aquaculture) for the future. Further, it’s about creating a balance for the well being of both future and current generations in three main areas: economy, society and the environment. Sustainability is a process and a journey that is ongoing.

J.J. McDonnell is committed to working with our vendors to collect key information about all of our seafood products and assessing that information against environmental indicators with the help of our partners. We will regularly review the information and preferentially sell environmentally responsible seafood. When fisheries and farms are found to have environmental risks associated with them, we will encourage our vendors to work with their supply chain to make improvements to advance their sustainability.

Working with the Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP), we collect key information from our vendors to better understand the sustainability of our products. Information collected and assessed includes scientific names of the species, location of harvest/farm, type of gear used to harvest the fish, source of fishmeal and feed for farmed products, and any certification information.

We here at J.J. McDonnell are proud of our vendor selection. We carefully and patiently choose who we buy from to ensure that you, our customers, get the best and most responsibly sourced seafood available. Each potential vendor of J.J. McDonnell is required to fill out a self assessment form that our purchasing and quality assurance departments review. This Supplier Self Assessment allows us to gain an understanding of what this potential vendor is doing in regards to:

  • Environmental Responsibility
  • Food Safety
  • Hygiene
  • Foreign Body Control
  • Sustainable and Fair Practices
  • And More!

We realize that sustainability is a long-term journey and requires expertise from the industry, governments, conservation groups, and scientists. To that end, we collaborate and seek advisement from the following groups:

  • Marine Stewardship Council
  • National Fisheries Institute
  • Sea Pact
  • Sustainable Fisheries Partnership
  • National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
  • State of Maryland
  • State of North Carolina
  • Virginia Marine Resources Council
  • And more!

We are committed to selectively sourcing from partners, vendors, and suppliers who share our values and share a common commitment toward the continuous improvement and sustainability of our resources. We will educate our vendors about our sustainable seafood commitment and engage them in improvement projects when necessary. As part of our commitment, we will educate our own staff and customers about the environmental impacts of our products and our sustainable seafood initiatives.

Here are a few of the ‘hands on’ things J.J. McDonnell does:

  • Fishery Improvement Projects (FIP)  with Wegmans and Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP)
  • Supplier Site Visits by our QA Manager
  • Connecting our Customers and Community with the local DNR and many local fisheries
  • Trace Register
  • Official Rockfish Weigh Station
  • And more!



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