Green Living, sustainability

Q&A: Chris Kastern


At World Wildlife Fund SA (WWF SA), Chris Kastern works with retailers in the sustainable seafood arena to bring about positive change on the water.

What is your role within WWF? I manage the WWF SA Seafood Market Transformation programme, an initiative that picks up on the Southern African Sustainable Seafood Initiative (SASSI). SASSI provides consumers with a tool to help incentivise retailers to get behind seafood sustainability, which in turn provides a market drive for fisheries and aquaculture operations to address sustainability challenges.

How does SASSI’s seafood-choice list work? SASSI has divided seafood up into three lists: green-list species are from healthy stocks that are well managed; orange-list species have areas of concern with sustainability; red-list species have serious sustainability concerns and consumers are advised not to buy these species. Download the SASSI app at or SMS the name of the fish you are buying to 079-499-8795 and a response will tell you whether to avoid!

How can consumers make a difference? Ask three questions when buying seafood: What is it? Where is it from? How was it caught/farmed? You can choose green-listed species, and you can ask retailers what they’re doing about sustainable seafood, and hold them accountable to the commitments that they make.

This article originally featured in the December 2014 issue of HL.