Petco's commitment to marine aquatic life

Petco's commitment
to marine aquatic life

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Support Petco and our efforts to conserve and protect the world's coral reefs and the fish that depend upon them.

Our Commitment:

Petco is committed to offering saltwater life that is either aquacultured or collected through practices that include careful attention to the sustainability of both the animals and the marine environments where they live.

Most of the saltwater fish sold world-wide today are collected from the wild. Our long-term goal is to offer only aquacultured saltwater aquatic life. Today, more than 95% of the aquatic life we offer – including nearly all the freshwater fish and all of the corals and liverock – is aquacultured using environmentally responsible practices.

What does aquacultured mean?

  • Aquacultured fish are bred, born and raised in an aquarium environment.
  • Aquacultured corals are reproduced from other corals using environmentally responsible practices.
  • Aquacultured live rock (rock with beneficial algae) is produced using environmentally responsible practices.
  • No aquacultured corals or live rock are taken from coral reefs or oceans, in keeping with our commitment to their preservation.

Why not offer only aquacultured aquatic life?

  • Most saltwater species have not been successfully raised using aquaculture practices, though our efforts continue to achieve this goal.

Why is aquaculture better than collecting from the oceans?

  • Aquacultured aquatic life helps preserve the population of natural aquatic life, in keeping with our commitment to the sustainability of both the animals and the habitats where they live.
  • Aquacultured fish are better suited for home aquariums because they are bred, born and raised in aquarium environments.
  • Aquacultured aquatic life does not experience the added stress or other risks that can occur when collecting marine life from the oceans.
  • Aquacultured aquatic life supports the sustainability of many species and their natural environments.

Actions we're taking to support our commitment:

We're constantly working with our suppliers to make more aquacultured aquatic life species available to our customers as alternatives to wild collected aquatic life. We have discontinued the sale of marine life deemed not responsible to sell and have implemented a regular review process of appropriateness for all Marine life available in Petco stores. To demonstrate how serious we consider this commitment, Petco donates 1% of all marine aquatic life sales in support of aquaculture research and development initiatives.

Where aquaculture is not yet a viable option, with input from industry experts and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), we've developed a Marine Aquatic Life Vendor Standards of Excellence program to set strict standards to purchase only from suppliers who engage in responsible collection and transportation practices.

Highlights of the Marine Aquatic Life Standards of Excellence program include the following.

  • We require our suppliers to educate collectors and maintain written confirmation regarding using only responsible collection practices, such as no use of cyanide or other poisons, no coral breaking or trenching, and no use of dangerous nets.
  • We require our suppliers to ensure proper handling and shipping procedures from collection to delivery, in accordance with international standards such as the International Air Transport Association (IATA) standards.
  • We require our suppliers to ensure compliance with all laws and regulations governing the collection and export of any wildlife.
  • We require our suppliers to visit their suppliers to ensure the Marine Life Standards of Excellence are withheld.
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