Pollock

Pollock

Pollock

At a glance

Eco-rating Mercury Omega-3s
+-Atlantic pollock (Norway gillnet and purse seine)
Best
Low

MORE ABOUT ATLANTIC POLLOCK

The Atlantic pollock migrates from coastal to deeper waters come winter. It is brownish-green with a silvery underside and can reach 25 pounds and a record of 4 feet (122 cm).

Commercial Sources

Atlantic pollock are found in the North Atlantic Ocean. In the eastern Atlantic, they occur from the Barents Sea in northern Europe to the Bay of Biscay off France, and around Iceland. In the western Atlantic, they range from southwestern Greenland and the Hudson Strait in Canada to North Carolina.

The main source of Atlantic pollock is Norway. Atlantic pollock sold in the U.S. are primarily from Canada and, to a lesser degree, from Norway. In the U.S., consumers can purchase both Atlantic and Alaska pollock. Despite the similar names, these are separate species with very different tastes and uses in the kitchen

Capture Methods

Atlantic Pollock come from marine fisheries and it is caught by various methods, primarily bottom trawl, Danish seines, and bottom gillnets. These three methods have significant environmental impacts, the first two can heavily impact the ocean floor and bottom gillnets may result in high bycatch of marine mammals. The purse seine method used in the small Norwegian fishery is a less destructive method.

+-Atlantic pollock (Canada, U.S.)
OK
Low

MORE ABOUT ATLANTIC POLLOCK

The Atlantic pollock migrates from coastal to deeper waters come winter. It is brownish-green with a silvery underside and can reach 25 pounds and a record of 4 feet (122 cm).

Commercial Sources

Atlantic pollock are found in the North Atlantic Ocean. In the eastern Atlantic, they occur from the Barents Sea in northern Europe to the Bay of Biscay off France, and around Iceland. In the western Atlantic, they range from southwestern Greenland and the Hudson Strait in Canada to North Carolina.

The main source of Atlantic pollock is Norway. Atlantic pollock sold in the U.S. are primarily from Canada and, to a lesser degree, from Norway. In the U.S., consumers can purchase both Atlantic and Alaska pollock. Despite the similar names, these are separate species with very different tastes and uses in the kitchen

Capture Methods

Atlantic Pollock come from marine fisheries and it is caught by various methods, primarily bottom trawl, Danish seines, and bottom gillnets. These three methods have significant environmental impacts, the first two can heavily impact the ocean floor and bottom gillnets may result in high bycatch of marine mammals. The purse seine method used in the small Norwegian fishery is a less destructive method.

+-Atlantic pollock (Iceland gillnet)
OK
Low

MORE ABOUT ATLANTIC POLLOCK

The Atlantic pollock migrates from coastal to deeper waters come winter. It is brownish-green with a silvery underside and can reach 25 pounds and a record of 4 feet (122 cm).

Commercial Sources

Atlantic pollock are found in the North Atlantic Ocean. In the eastern Atlantic, they occur from the Barents Sea in northern Europe to the Bay of Biscay off France, and around Iceland. In the western Atlantic, they range from southwestern Greenland and the Hudson Strait in Canada to North Carolina.

The main source of Atlantic pollock is Norway. Atlantic pollock sold in the U.S. are primarily from Canada and, to a lesser degree, from Norway. In the U.S., consumers can purchase both Atlantic and Alaska pollock. Despite the similar names, these are separate species with very different tastes and uses in the kitchen

Capture Methods

Atlantic Pollock come from marine fisheries and it is caught by various methods, primarily bottom trawl, Danish seines, and bottom gillnets. These three methods have significant environmental impacts, the first two can heavily impact the ocean floor and bottom gillnets may result in high bycatch of marine mammals. The purse seine method used in the small Norwegian fishery is a less destructive method.

+-Atlantic pollock (Norway/Danish seine, trawl)
OK
Low

MORE ABOUT ATLANTIC POLLOCK

The Atlantic pollock migrates from coastal to deeper waters come winter. It is brownish-green with a silvery underside and can reach 25 pounds and a record of 4 feet (122 cm).

Commercial Sources

Atlantic pollock are found in the North Atlantic Ocean. In the eastern Atlantic, they occur from the Barents Sea in northern Europe to the Bay of Biscay off France, and around Iceland. In the western Atlantic, they range from southwestern Greenland and the Hudson Strait in Canada to North Carolina.

The main source of Atlantic pollock is Norway. Atlantic pollock sold in the U.S. are primarily from Canada and, to a lesser degree, from Norway. In the U.S., consumers can purchase both Atlantic and Alaska pollock. Despite the similar names, these are separate species with very different tastes and uses in the kitchen

Capture Methods

Atlantic Pollock come from marine fisheries and it is caught by various methods, primarily bottom trawl, Danish seines, and bottom gillnets. These three methods have significant environmental impacts, the first two can heavily impact the ocean floor and bottom gillnets may result in high bycatch of marine mammals. The purse seine method used in the small Norwegian fishery is a less destructive method.

+-Alaska pollock (U.S.)
OK
Low

MORE ABOUT ALASKA POLLOCK (U.S.)

A member of the cod family, the Pacific pollock is an olive-green to brownish fish that is the principal source for fish sticks and other prepared frozen fish products. It is also a popular food source for seabirds and marine mammals. This sleek fish resides in the northern Pacific. It grows to nearly 3 feet (0.9 meter) in length.

Commercial Sources

Pacific pollock are found in the North Pacific Ocean. In the eastern Pacific, they occur from the Bering Sea to central California. In the western Pacific, they are distributed around the Aleutian Islands, off Kamchatcka and in the Seas of Okhotsk and Japan.

The main sources of Pacific pollock are the Russian Federation and the United States.

Capture Methods

Pacific pollock come from marine fisheries, not fish farms. They are primarily caught with pair and stern trawls, Danish seines and longlines. Additional types of fishing gear include gillnets and drag nets.

+-Atlantic pollock (Iceland/Danish seine, trawl)
Worst
Low

MORE ABOUT ATLANTIC POLLOCK

The Atlantic pollock migrates from coastal to deeper waters come winter. It is brownish-green with a silvery underside and can reach 25 pounds and a record of 4 feet (122 cm).

Commercial Sources

Atlantic pollock are found in the North Atlantic Ocean. In the eastern Atlantic, they occur from the Barents Sea in northern Europe to the Bay of Biscay off France, and around Iceland. In the western Atlantic, they range from southwestern Greenland and the Hudson Strait in Canada to North Carolina.

The main source of Atlantic pollock is Norway. Atlantic pollock sold in the U.S. are primarily from Canada and, to a lesser degree, from Norway. In the U.S., consumers can purchase both Atlantic and Alaska pollock. Despite the similar names, these are separate species with very different tastes and uses in the kitchen

Capture Methods

Atlantic Pollock come from marine fisheries and it is caught by various methods, primarily bottom trawl, Danish seines, and bottom gillnets. These three methods have significant environmental impacts, the first two can heavily impact the ocean floor and bottom gillnets may result in high bycatch of marine mammals. The purse seine method used in the small Norwegian fishery is a less destructive method.

+-Imitation crab (non-Alaska)
Unrated
Low

More About IMITATION CRAB

Imitation crab is also called surimi, a minced fish paste, and is known as kanikama when prepared for sushi.

Recommended servings per month

Contaminant Men Women Kids 6-12 Kids 0-5
Atlantic pollock (Canada, U.S.) Mercury 4+ 4+ 4+ 4+
Atlantic pollock (Iceland gillnet) Mercury 4+ 4+ 4+ 4+
Atlantic pollock (Iceland/Danish seine, trawl) Mercury 4+ 4+ 4+ 4+
Atlantic pollock (Norway/Danish seine, trawl) Mercury 4+ 4+ 4+ 4+
Atlantic pollock (Norway gillnet and purse seine) Mercury 4+ 4+ 4+ 4+
Imitation crab (non-Alaska) Mercury 4+ 4+ 4+ 4+
Alaska pollock (U.S.) Mercury 4+ 4+ 4+ 4+
Eco details: 
  • Pollock, a relative of cod, is the main component of fish sticks, fish filet sandwiches and imitation crab (surimi).
  • These fish mature quickly and have high rates of reproduction, allowing them to better withstand fishing pressure.
  • Alaska pollock is the largest fishery in the U.S., and populations are healthy. They are caught with midwater trawls, which result in very low rates of bycatch.
  • Atlantic pollock is not nearly as abundant as its Pacific cousin, and it is most often caught by bottom trawl or gillnet. In New England, pollock are now caught under an innovative new ‘sector’ management plan. Discards in the fishery have dramatically decreased, sector fishermen stayed under their catch limits for all groundfish species, and less gear was deployed compared to previous years.