Home » Hannaford, Research Institute Launch Seafood Guide
Meat/Seafood/Poultry Northeast

Hannaford, Research Institute Launch Seafood Guide

Hannaford logo

Hannaford Supermarkets and the Gulf of Maine Research Institute have introduced a Gulf of Maine Seafood Guide designed to help familiarize customers new to America with fresh local offerings while further developing the market for sustainable seafood.

The guide, which was developed by GMRI and translated by House of Languages in Portland, is available at the seafood counter at all Hannaford stores, as well as online. It is available in six languages – Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Portuguese and Spanish.

Featuring color images of whole fish and shellfish, the guide includes seafood flavor profiles, health attributes and cooking tips. 

Customers will find guidance on a variety of whitefish, including haddock, pollock and white hake – all available in New England waters. Monkfish and spiny dogfish are called out for denser meat and strong flavors. Acadian redfish, black sea bass and scup are noted as good for cooking whole with small bones.

“We know many members of local immigrant communities come from parts of the world that eat much more seafood than Americans do, and through this project we learned more about their interest in local seafood,” said Kyle Foley, sustainable seafood director at GMRI. 

“Developing this guide is an exciting step towards connecting local immigrant communities with our local seafood industry and the amazing range of fish, shellfish and sea vegetables we have in the Gulf of Maine.”

The guide is a result of feedback from focus groups with immigrants from four continents. GMRI worked with Hannaford, Good Shepherd Food Bank and Portland Adult Education to organize the groups. 

Khadija Ahmed, a staff member with Good Shepherd Food Bank and an emigree from the Democratic Republic of the Congo about 20 years ago, facilitated the groups. About 90 percent of participants said they liked and wanted to eat more seafood.

“This new guide is a vital step in connecting new Americans with the information they need to make sustainable seafood options more accessible,” said Jessica Donahue, director of marketing and communications for Good Shepherd Food Bank. 

“It’s not just about the food on our plates; it’s about the stories, traditions and flavors that come with it. The development of these guides is a celebration of diversity, a pathway to healthier lives, and a testament to the power of partnerships between organizations…in our shared vision of ending hunger and strengthening our communities.”

The focus groups validated what Nathan Jewell, a seafood merchandiser at Hannaford, heard at stores: immigrant customers were confident cooks, but did not have an easy way to relate what they saw in Northeast seafood cases with what they had grown up with in their native countries.

“We learned of the need for a guide or an orientation to the seafood that is available locally. The groups also helped us understand their preferences – importance of affordability, frozen options and ways to better understand the fresh seafood offered locally,” Jewell said. 

“Many benefits came from the work to develop the guide. We understand the needs of our customers and our communities better and we are seeing new potential for Gulf of Maine seafood too. I think all the partners learned some things that will help develop the market for Gulf of Maine seafood.” 

The seafood guide is the latest development in a long-standing partnership between GMRI and Hannaford. In 2010, Hannaford began work with GMRI to vet and audit all seafood products sold at its stores on a continuous basis to ensure they are fully traceable, come from responsible sources and meet strict criteria in Hannaford’s seafood sourcing policy, which requires all seafood products sold at its stores to meet key sustainability criteria. 

For each seafood product, information is required from suppliers, including how and where fish were caught or farmed and whether the fish is sourced from a fishery or farm that is certified to a Global Sustainable Seafood Initiative-benchmarked standard, engaged in a Fishery Improvement Project or assessed as low risk by GMRI. 

About Hannaford Supermarkets

The Scarborough, Maine-based company operates 186 stores in Maine, New York, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont, most with full-service pharmacies. In 2022, it donated 25 million pounds of food to hunger relief organizations and prevented 65 million pounds of food waste from reaching landfills.

Read more seafood news from The Shelby Report.

About the author

Sommer Stockton

Web Editor

Sommer joined The Shelby Report in January 2022 after graduating from Brenau University in Gainesville, GA with a B.A. and M.A. in Communications and Media Studies. Sommer is excited to learn about the grocery industry and share her findings with The Shelby Report's readers!

Featured Photos

Featured Photo IDDBA Annual Convention
George R. Brown Convention Center
Houston, TX