by Matt Alderton | December 10, 2015
Overfishing has made the world's oceans sick. To help them heal, Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide has launched a new series of sustainable seafood guides designed to help its associates choose fish for their food and beverage programs that are both tasty and environmentally responsible, it announced today.

Created in partnership with the New England Aquarium, Starwood's new tools include a back-of-the-house poster, a purchasing pocket guide, and supplemental materials instructing associates about which species they should avoid in their region and why, suggesting alternatives and offering questions to ask suppliers to ensure that purchased seafood is sustainable.

"We are excited to be partnering with Starwood to advance their sustainable seafood efforts and empower their associates to help Starwood achieve its goals," said Tania Taranovski, director of the Sustainable Seafood Program at the New England Aquarium. "Associate education is a critical step in driving improvements and Starwood is leading the way by developing practical and innovative educational tools."

Starwood's new tools are a continuation of past efforts: In 2012, the company banned all whale and sea turtle from its menus, and in 2014 it became the first global luxury hotelier ban shark fin in all restaurants and food and beverage services across its global portfolio. The company also recently updated its Sustainable Food & Beverage Policy with a new Sustainable Seafood Position Statement.

"The type of seafood and how it is caught and farmed has a huge impact on ocean health -- which in turn affects our human health, our communities, our local economies, and our business," said Andrea Pinabell, vice president of sustainability at Starwood. "Overfishing, declining seafood populations, and ocean and waterway degradation are increasing concerns. Sustainability is core to who we are and selecting premium seafood that is well sourced and traceable is already a point of pride among our chefs. Our goal is to help Starwood associates around the world make selections that protect the environment and local fishing economies, and create a better experience for consumers."