In 2008, Bamboo Sushi became the world’s first certified sustainable sushi restaurant.
Driven by a deep commitment to environmental and social change, we set out to make an impact in this world. Setting a new standard for restaurants, we combine the values and guidelines of multiple, international organizations to ensure every plate we serve reflects our deep dedication to sustainability. As we grow our footprint of restaurants, we seek to inspire change…change in the way people eat, the way restaurants do business and the way we treat our environment.
Video made in partnership with the Walton Family Foundation.
THE NEED FOR WHAT WE DO
Fish is the most widely-consumed animal protein on the planet. Today, overfishing, lack of effective fishery management, and our own consumption habits are just a few factors contributing to a decline in fish populations across the world. According to the United Nations, 76% of our oceans’ fisheries are either overfished or completely depleted. Our generation has a responsibility to ensure our oceans can remain a plentiful food source for years to come.
In all things, we seek to lower our impact on this planet and inspire others to do the same. From the design of our restaurants to our operational decisions, we consider the following:Our Sourcing – Using renewable resources, sourcing fish from plentiful populations, considering the catch method and its environmental impact Our Footprint – Considering the carbon, waste, energy, and environmental impact of our menu and operation Our Community – Ensuring that we, and those we work with, are having a positive impact on the health of their local community – no forced labor practices, contributing to local economies, benefiting developing nations Our Partners – Working with like-minded businesses and organizations that share our values, hold us to higher standards, and inspire us to constantly improve
Bamboo Sushi became the world’s first restaurant to know their carbon footprint down to the menu item. Click here to see the journey of our supply chain, and learn more about what we’re doing to remain carbon neutral.
Partnerships and Certifications
Monterey Bay Aquarium
Our sourcing begins with an understanding of individual ocean population health driven by Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch Program. Their guidelines provide the most comprehensive guidelines available for sustainable seafood choices. Monterey Bay Aquarium
B Corporations are a new type of company which uses the power of business to solve social and environmental problems. We’ve met their comprehensive and transparent social and environmental performance standards, allowing us to stand out as a leader in the market.
Smart Catch is a sustainable seafood program created by chefs for chefs with the purpose of increasing the sustainability of the seafood supply chain. Bamboo Sushi holds “leader” status within this program due to our industry-leading commitment to sustainable sourcing.James Beard Foundation
Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
The MSC is the world’s leading independent third-party certification and eco-labeling program for sustainable seafood. We use their guidelines for sustainable fishing and seafood traceability to set a new standard for our industry.Marine Stewardship Council (MSC)
Green Restaurant Association
Being the first sushi restaurant certified by the Green Restaurant Association, they have acknowledged our dedication to sustainability above the water: a low carbon footprint, use of renewable energy and proactive approach to reducing our waste.Green Restaurant Association
Understanding our carbon footprint has led us to partner with the Ocean Foundation, supporting their SeaGrass Grow project to offset our restaurants’ emissions and restore critical marine habitatsOcean Foundation
The Ocean Friendly Restaurants program certifies those taking strong actions to reduce ocean pollution through the reduction of plastic waste, energy efficiency, and water conservationSurfrider
What is “conscious hospitality”?
We make mindful business decisions that connect environmental impact, the prosperity of our team members and purveyors, as well as the enrichment of the communities we live in. We look at business as a catalyst for change – through our partnership with B Corporation, we identify opportunities for our teams to give back to the local community, connecting with our mission in a tangible way. We invite our guests to join us in these efforts through regular events, volunteer opportunities and continued education.
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Coho salmon, Alaska
An assortment of fish
Foraging seaweeds on the Mendocino coast
Sustainable aquaculture at Blue Ocean Mariculture, Hawaii
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Each Bamboo Sushi location serves a menu of signature sushi rolls, traditional nigiri, and Japanese-inspired share plates. Our restaurants showcase a full cocktail program as well as an extensive saké selection. Every night, our chef also craft location-specific special plates featuring local, rare and seasonal ingredients.
Our menu reflects our deep dedication to sustainability.
KEEP READING TO LEARN MORE ABOUT OUR SOURCING
Our albacore is caught using 60-foot long lines from day boats that go about 50-100 miles off the coast of the Pacific Northwest. The boat tows lures called “jigs” from fishing lines attached to outriggers, that are extended on the sides of the boat. With a crew of about six people, fisherman pull in the albacore hand-over-hand, one at a time directly from the line to process right on the boat. Albacore is one of our fish that is also “Frozen-at-Sea” – a practice of blast freezing fresh fish immediately after it’s caught, at such a low temperature that ice crystals don’t have a chance to form. This stops and breakdown of the fish, while preserving a flavor that is fresher than most fish that is brought back to land to be processed while fresh.
Foraging is one of the more environmentally friendly ways to harvest food with a low carbon footprint and, when done correctly, a lightweight impact on the ecosystem. We work with Terry from Ocean Harvest Sea Vegetable Company to source seaweeds from the Mendocino coast in California. These grow naturally in the rich waters of the Pacific, and are foraged from tidal pools within the rocky coast – a perfect environment for these nutrient rich sea vegetables to thrive. Terry’s harvesting methods ensure continued growth of the seaweeds while maintaining the surrounding ecosystem. Harvested at every new and full moon, the seaweeds are rinsed in the salty ocean water, then taken to the nearby Redwood forests to be dried in the natural forest air. Each front is laid our and turned every hour. The result? A sustainable product, filled with flavor, available on all Bamboo Sushi menus
Blue Ocean Mariculture is one of our most exciting aquaculture partners. Their sustainably raised Hawaiian Kanpachi has set a new standard for the seafood industry. They employ a variety of sustainable farming practices to reduce their impact on the surrounding ocean and wildlife. They use specially designed open water net pens which are engineered to eliminate the risk of unintentional wildlife entanglement, or “bycatch”. And because these fish are raised from hatch to harvest, there is no pressure on wild fish populations. The Hawaiian Kanpachi, a member of the Amberjack family, has a high protein conversion ration (weight of fish divided by its foot intake), making it an efficient and sustainable species to raise. As we grow, we see to support sustainable aquaculture operations across North America.
Montna Farms supplies the non-GMO Japanese short grain rice used across our menu. Every year after harvest, the fields of this California farmland are flooded even further, as part of their BirdReturns Program, providing critical habitat to a wide array of birds. Species like the Long-billed Curlew use the land as sanctuary to rest and feed along their migratory path from Canada to Mexico.