Petco's commitment to marine aquatic life

Petco sources responsibly and donates to nonprofits advancing sustainable aquaculture. Learn more about our efforts to conserve and protect the world’s coral reefs and the animals that depend on them!

Our Commitment:

Petco is committed to offering marine aquatic 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.

What does aquacultured mean?

  • Aquaculture is the farming of fish and invertebrates.
  • Aquacultured animals are not collected from the wild
  • Aquacultured corals are reproduced from other corals using environmentally responsible practices.
  • Aquacultured live rock (rock with beneficial algae) is produced using environmentally responsible practices and is not taken from the reef.

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.
  • In many communities around the world, sustainable collection of ornamental marine fish is the primary subsistence activity. To ensure their livelihoods exist in the future they protect the reefs.

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 aquatic life deemed not responsible to sell and have implemented a regular review process of appropriateness for all marine aquatic life available in Petco stores.

Where aquaculture is not 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.

Petco is committed to conserving and protecting the world’s oceans. In addition to our sourcing standards of excellence, we support nonprofits leading the way in aquaculture research and sustainability initiatives. Since 2018, Petco has donated nearly $500k to our partners, Rising Tide and Coral Reef Foundation.

Rising Tide Conservation Logo

Rising Tide Conservation is dedicated to developing and promoting aquaculture of marine ornamental fish through collaborative efforts of researchers, public aquaria, hobbyists and conservation groups.

Learn more about Rising Tide Conservation >

Coral Restoration Foundation Logo

Coral Restoration Foundation™ (CRF) is the world's largest non-profit marine-conservation organization dedicated to restoring coral reefs to a healthy state, in Florida and globally. Their core mission is to restore coral reefs, to educate others on the importance of our oceans, and to use science to further coral research and coral reef monitoring techniques.

Learn more about Coral Restoration Foundation™ >