Semi-natural aquacultures

Today, around half of all fish and seafood consumed around the world comes from aquacultures – and this percentage is rising. It is therefore crucial to us that the farming is sustainable and the animals are kept and fed appropriately. Consequently, we rely primarily on organic aquacultures.

Organic farming of fish and seafood

Many of the fish and shrimps for Naturaplan come from controlled organic aquacultures. Aquaculture describes fish and shrimps farmed in natural pools, artificially created tanks or net cages in the open sea. Organic aquacultures used by Coop satisfy the Naturaplan guidelines and are certified to Bio Suisse guidelines or – in the absence of any Bio Suisse guideline – other guidelines recognized by Bio Suisse, and meet the following requirements:

  • Humane husbandry
  • Monitored feeding without the addition of hormones or growth promoters
  • No preventive use of medicines
  • Where possible, Swiss fish and/or fish processed in Switzerland

Same requirements for imported fish

The stringent Bio Suisse guidelines also apply to imported products. Only ship, rail and road transport is permitted, not air freight. As such, organic shrimps and organic pangasius are imported frozen. Quality is preserved by freezing immediately after they are caught.

Example of Naturaplan organic shrimps

The mangrove forests at the southern tip of Vietnam are one of the most important ecosystems in the world and are home to countless species of fish and crustacean. However, the intensive use of the region for shrimp farming since the mid-70s has resulted in the systematic clearance of these forests, and the intense farming and use of veterinary medicines has led to soil erosion, water contamination and increased soil salinity.

We began aligning shrimp farming in the region with organic requirements back in 2001, thereby promoting the reforestation of the mangroves.

Owing to the recreated biodiversity of the mangrove area and the very low numbers of shrimp in the pools, the shrimps do not need to be fed but can instead feed themselves. The percentage of forest in the organic-certified mangrove area must amount to at least half of the organic farm's operational area and any deforestation must be immediately offset by reforestation.

As such, we were able to switch a large proportion of our fresh and frozen product ranges to organic-quality shrimps in 2004. We were the first retailer to do so anywhere in the world. Today, 7 000 hectares of mangrove land is given over to Bio Suisse-certified shrimp farming. Shrimp farmers have also adopted organic farming methods across a further 20 000 hectares of mangroves and are producing shrimps by means of extensive farming.