Good Fish Guide
Prawn, King (whiteleg), prawns
Method of production - Farmed
Production country - Global
Production method - All (ASC)
Accreditation - ASC
Fish type - Shellfish
Intensive prawn/shrimp farming is associated with a number of negative environmental impacts which are of concern, these include: Impacts on ecologically sensitive habitats; the risk of salinisation of freshwater bodies; discharge of organic matter and nutrients leading to environmental changes; the use of chemicals and therapeutics in production and the potential of disease transfer between farmed and wild prawns. Marine prawns are carnivorous requiring high protein inclusion on their diet, this is one of the most critical concerns regarding prawn farming as the supply of fishmeal and fish-oil being used is, in general not traceable to species level and is not certified sustainable particularly in SE Asia. However, there is a significant amount of International work being undertaken at present to address and improve feed production and sourcing. There are also concerns regarding the current regulatory framework and level of enforcement for aquaculture production in South East Asia. The rating provided applies at a country/regional level and MCS recognises there is a diversity of practices and producers of warmwater prawn, some of which may be working to improve their practices. In these exceptional cases MCS would encourage support of these producers provided, and only if, a commitment to improvement which ultimately leads to achieving a recognised production standard can be verified.
The king prawn (or whiteleg prawn, white shrimp) belongs to the largest of the prawn and shrimp family, the Penaeidae. It is a native species of the Eastern Pacific coast. Its lifecycle may be divided into 6 stages or phases, from embryo to adult, which it completes in one year. The age of sexual maturity varies from 5 to 7 months. They can live up to 2 years in the wild although farmed prawns are usually harvested at 6 months.
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Prawn /shrimp are farmed in saline/brackish water ponds of various sizes and intensities in many parts of the world, either in coastal areas or inland within or outside the intertidal zone. Intensive pond farming has a higher stocking density of prawns and requires the use of inputs such as feed and therapeutants as opposed to traditional extensive systems.
Based on method of production, fish type, and consumer rating: only fish rated 2 and below are included as an alternative in the list below . Click on a name to show the sustainable options available.
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