Blue Sushi Sake Grill Becomes Seafood Watch’s Largest Sushi Restaurant Group
This year, Blue Sushi Sake Grill enacted their Conscious Earth movement, a concept-wide program that looks to make a positive difference on the planet by leading the restaurant industry in seafood sustainability. With this program, Blue formed a partnership with the Monterey Bay Seafood Aquarium Seafood Watch program, making them the largest sushi restaurant group partner, based off the number of markets they are in (10 markets and 13 restaurants total).
Becoming a partner of the Monterey Bay Seafood Watch program is no easy feat—in order to reach approval, Blue audited all their sourcing practices to ensure their catch methods and locations were approved for the program and changed vendors where necessary. In 2018, Blue sourced over 100 different products, an extensive variety for a sushi restaurant with locations across the country.
“Businesses like Blue Sushi Sake Grill are essential in protecting our ocean and the long-term supply of seafood,” says Seafood Watch Business Engagement Manager, Morgan Smith. “They are an ideal partner—committed to environmentally-responsible sourcing, proactive in their decision-making, and determined to be a leader in the realm of seafood sustainability.”As Blue looks to the future of Conscious Earth, they predict that their amounts of sustainably sourced product will continue to rise. In 2020, they’re estimating to source 85,000 lbs. of Atlantic Salmon, their most popular fish. Additional estimations include 80,000 lbs. of Big Eye Tuna, a fish only responsibly caught in a few parts of the world, 30,000 lbs. of Kanpachi, a farmed fish grown with care in the clear waters of Hawaii and 17,500 lbs. of Unagi (eel), which they source from the only approved eel purveyor on Seafood Watch’s Good Alternative list. Blue has also moved from sourcing many of their fish across the ocean (China, Japan, etc.) to choosing American-based fisheries to reduce their carbon footprint. For a map of their seafood products and their sources, please see here.
While Blue is continuing to make a difference in responsibly sourcing their seafood, the eco-friendliest dishes at the restaurant are the vegan and plant-based offerings. Choosing a plant-based alternative to fish can benefit the earth’s ecosystem. The restaurant offers multiple vegan rolls including, Avo Ahimi, made with vegan tomato “tuna,” avocado and sweet soy, and the Eden Roll, sweet potato vegan tempura, grilled asparagus, edamame hummus, sundried tomato, brown rice, soy paper and olive oil. Additional vegan offerings will be arriving on their menu soon, like Unami, a plant-based alternative to eel and 3 varieties of vegan roe made from seaweed.