(U.S. Atlantic, Trawl)
U.S. Haddock populations have recovered from past overfishing. U.S. haddock caught with hook-and-line is a "Best Choice." U.S. haddock caught with bottom trawls is a "Good Alternative" due to concerns about habitat damage.
Haddock is occasionally called "scrod," although this common term can refer to juvenile cod as well.
A bottom-dwelling fish, haddock is an important part of the Atlantic groundfish fishery. Haddock was overfished for years, but improved management ended overfishing in 1995, and stocks are now fully recovered - a significant improvement for the fishery.
Unfortunately, the majority of U.S. Atlantic haddock is caught using bottom trawl gear, causing considerable damage to seafloor habitats. Bottom trawls also catch unintended species that are unmarketable, illegal or undersized and discarded as bycatch. In contrast, hook-and-line fishing causes little bycatch and does not damage the seafloor.
While U.S. haddock populations have recovered significantly, the use of habitat damaging gear remains a concern. Consumers should look for hook-and-line-caught haddock a "Best Choice" while trawl-caught haddock is a "Good Alternative."