We recognize our responsibility to the health of our oceans and all those who rely on it. That’s why we champion sustainable fishing and advocate for fishers, setting tomorrow’s standards through our actions today.



No single aspect is more important, or more central, to the sustainability program of Clover Leaf Seafoods than ensuring the responsible management of fisheries from which we source.

Clover Leaf Seafoods is a founding member of the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation (ISSF).
ISSF is a partnership of scientists, the tuna industry, environmental champions, and charitable foundations that researches, shares, and advocates for best practices in sustainable fishing and whose participating companies make commitments to adhere to ISSF sourcing policies.

ISSF’s goal is to undertake science-based initiatives for the long-term sustainability of tuna stocks, reduction of by-catch and promotion of ecosystem health, and improve all tuna fisheries to meet the strict sustainability certification standards.

We supply products from sustainable, well managed, healthy fisheries and from areas that have action plans to return the fishery to a thriving state and follow ISSF’s best practices and independent science-based research data to validate our approach.

A critical component in demonstrating transparency and compliance with ISSF resolutions is the third party audit of member companies. These audits are conducted by the Marine Resource Assessment Group (MRAG) – Americas and evaluate company performance in meeting ISSF resolutions in a number of critical areas.

Clover Leaf Seafood’s audit results were once again outstanding with no non-conformances noted. We believe this is representative of our concerted efforts to ensure all products reaching the market comply with ISSF commitments, we are proud of our results and we will continue to drive to maintain the highest standard!

Click here to view our 2020 Audit Report



We also seek third-party recognition and certification of the fisheries from which we source, and work to continuously improve fisheries through Fishery Improvement Projects (FIPs) and direct partnerships. We rely on recognized certification systems that have been validated by the Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative (GSSI). Governed by a Steering Board representing the full seafood value chain, companies, NGOs, governments, and international organizations – including the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) – GSSI evaluates certification systems and develops benchmarking tools to improve sustainable seafood assessments and claims. GSSI recognized certification schemes include the Marine Stewardship Council (MCS), Best Aquaculture Practices (BAP), and Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) standards and others.

All Clover Leaf Wild Salmon are already sourced from the Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certified fisheries. Our light Tuna will be sourced from MSC certified fisheries by 2022. Our Oysters and Mussels will carry ASC certified certification in 2022.



All of our Albacore is line caught using longline, pole and line, or handline gear and is fully traceable from the fishing vessel to the canning facility using the code found on the top of the can. Longline vessels utilize circle hooks and monofilament lines, a combination recognized as best practice in reducing bycatch by such organizations as the (ISSF) and Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP). Our compliance with ISSF conservation measures, which include traceability, legal harvest, prohibition of shark finning and vessel training on best practices to name a few, are audited and published on an annual basis by a third party. Clover Leaf products labeled “Responsibly Sourced” meet these ISSF standards, are certified by as GSSI recognized standard, or listed in a credible, transparent fishery improvement project.



All of Clover Leaf’s tuna products on the shelf today are certified dolphin friendly and the labels on our products proudly show the “dolphin friendly” symbol.

Dolphin friendly means that Clover Leaf is certified by the Earth Island Institute as a Dolphin Safe Importer of canned tuna. Dolphin Safe and Dolphin Friendly Safe are used interchangeably, and mean that:

  • Drift nets are not used.
  • There are no purse seine sets made on dolphins through an entire fishing trip.
  • No accidental kills or serious injuries to dolphins during purse seine fishing sets.

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We are strong advocates for transparency and traceability and have strict requirements for communicating our sourcing practices to customers and consumers. We provide consumers with instant information about the tuna-to-market journey, including the size of the catch, point of capture and the fishing community that caught it, as well as valuable insights to verify authenticity, freshness, safety, fair trade fishing certification and sustainability. In 2015, Clover Leaf launched the Trace My Catch initiative, enabling consumers to track the source of their seafood from catch to can by entering a code found on the package. This allows us to ensure food safety and verify that seafood entering our supply chain is legally harvested and meets all our sustainable sourcing commitments.

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Our Commitment

We will mitigate and reduce bycatch through a combination of sourcing objectives, utilization of best practices and innovation.

Our Progress

We are supporting the extensive work on Fish Aggregating Devices (FADs) done by the International Seafood Sustainability Foundation – covering both FADs that reduce bycatch and biodegradable FADs (bamboo and cloth construction) that reduce the impact of beaching and debris.

Looking Ahead

We are in dialogue with NGOs, collaborative groups, and scientific organizations to expand these programs.

Best Practices

We use a number of best practices in longline and purse seine fishing, including;

  • Circle hooks: Difficult for non-target species to swallow and less harmful to released fish
  • Deep sets: Reduces accidental capture of surface level animals
  • Skipper training: Specialized in proper handling practices
  • Monofilament leads: Reduces capture of sharks
  • Bird scaring: Reduces interactions and harm to sea birds
  • Shark finning prohibited: A policy since 2012
  • Fin fish for bait: Reduces interactions with sea turtles and sone sharks
  • Non-entangling Fish Aggregating Devices (FADs): Reduces marine animal entanglement


Clover Leaf Seafoods is committed to creating a healthier marine ecosystems by reducing bycatch and addressing the impact of oceans plastics, particularly ghost gear. Ghost gear is lost or discarded fishing gear that accumulates in the oceans. Clover Leaf Seafoods does not engage in the fishing methods at highest risk for ghost gear, but any commercial fishing has an impact and we wish to do our part in finding solutions.

In 2018, we joined the Global Ghost Gear Initiative. The Global Ghost Gear Initiative (GGGI) is a cross-sectoral alliance committed to ensuring safer, cleaner oceans by driving economically viable and sustainable solutions to the problem of ghost fishing gear globally. We are supporting a project in Indonesia to develop ocean-safe tracking mechanisms to find and collect lost and abandoned fishing equipment and incentivize their collection and reuse.



To ensure the long-term health of the ocean we also must support those who are doing the important work of maintaining a healthy ocean ecosystem. We’re supporting this through partnerships with non-profit organizations, such as SeaTrees, an organization working with communities around the world to plant and protect ”blue carbon” coastal ecosystems. Our first projects with SeaTrees are (1) to restore the kelp equivalent of three football fields on the coast of Los Angeles and (2) planting 15,000 mangrove trees in Biak, Indonesia.




We are committed to ensuring the safe and fair treatment of all who are connected to our business and we expect the same commitment from our suppliers. That includes obeying all laws, promoting the health and safety of all workers, and actively auditing our suppliers and fleets from which we source to ensure they meet our standards of conduct.

Click here to view our 2020 Supplier Code of Conduct

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