Steps to Success: FishWise Partnership with Hy-Vee

Hy-Vee’s overall goal for their seafood includes protecting the health of their customers and the environment while providing the best quality and selection of seafood. To help realize the environmental component of this goal, Hy-Vee partnered with FishWise in 2011. FishWise is a non-profit seafood consultancy that works with retailers and other members of the seafood industry to promote the health and recovery of ocean ecosystems through environmentally responsible business practices. We have over a decade of experience developing and implementing sustainable seafood programs and our partners are recognized as industry leaders.

FishWise first began in 2002 out of concern for the serious issues facing the ocean and with the intention of enabling seafood businesses to support sustainability via responsible sourcing and customer education. Resource depletion, overfishing, pollution, habitat loss, and government mismanagement are only a few of the numerous threats facing ocean ecosystems today, and purchasing responsibly produced seafood can be a challenge. Fortunately, responsible options do exist and FishWise wants to help businesses like Hy-Vee source from these environmentally conscious suppliers, who are working to preserve seafood for future generations.

FishWise started working with Hy-Vee by helping the company develop their Seafood Procurement Policy, which acts as the foundation of their Responsible Seafood Program. After the Policy was implemented, FishWise began the ongoing process of researching products and communicating with Hy-Vee’s seafood buyers to make sourcing improvements. FishWise then consulted with Hy-Vee to develop the Responsible Choice point-of-sale materials and staff training program that will help Hy-Vee educate its customers about its responsibly sourced seafood.

Now we are entering an exciting phase in the Hy-Vee – FishWise partnership where the Responsible Seafood Program is being unveiled to customers. Next time you visit a Hy-Vee store, stop by the seafood department to take a look at the new Responsible Choice labels on products that meet the company’s Procurement Policy and have a conversation with Hy-Vee’s knowledgeable and friendly seafood staff.

Hy-Vee’s journey toward sustainability is not over, but as a result of the company’s willingness to make big changes and partner with FishWise, Hy-Vee has established itself as a leader in the industry and a destination for sustainable seafood.

Recipe Spotlight: Alaska King Crab Legs with Dipping Sauces

I enjoy being part of a company that features fish and shellfish caught in a sustainable way, so it can be enjoyed by people for generations to come.

That’s the case with our Alaska king crab legs, which can be prepared with a variety of dipping sauces. Crab legs are a good choice for entertaining, but also for everyday eating.

Don’t be intimidated. They’re very easy to prepare. All you need is a nice, big stock pot and some kitchen shears. Just bring 2 to 3 inches of water to a rapid simmer, throw the crab legs in and cover. It’s OK if some of the legs are sticking out of the pot.

When they’re done, tear the crab legs at the joint. Flip them to the smoother side and snip them open with the kitchen shears. Break the crab legs into pieces and open them to retrieve the meat.


Alaska King Crab Legs with Dipping SaucesAlaska King Crab Legs with Dipping Sauces

All you need:

3 to 4 pounds of Alaska king crab legs (snow or Dungeness also work), thawed or frozen

All you do:

1. To prepare the crab, fill a 16- to 20-ounce stock pot with water. Bring to a boil and add crab legs. Reduce the heat; cover and simmer for 8 to 10 minutes for frozen crab or 3 to 4 minutes for thawed crab, until heated through. Drain and serve with the dipping sauces, see recipes below.

Rouille Sauce

All you need:

  • 1/3 cup bottled roasted red peppers
  • 2 cloves minced garlic
  • 2/3 cup low-fat mayonnaise
  • 1 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes

All you do:

1. Combine the peppers and garlic in a food processor and process until well minced. Pulse in the remaining ingredients until well combined.

Basil-Mint Pesto Sauce

All you need:

  • 2 cups fresh basil leaves
  • 1 1/2 cups fresh mint leaves
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 3 tbsp toasted walnuts
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 3 1/2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

All you do:

1. Combine basil, mint, oil, walnuts, garlic and lemon juice in a food processor; puree until smooth. Add Parmesan and pulse until well combined. For a creamier sauce, combine 1/4 cup of the Basil-Mint Pesto sauce with 1/2 cup low-fat mayonnaise.

Mediterranean Dip

All you need:

  • 1 (6.5 oz) jar artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
  • 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup low-fat sour cream
  • 1 cup low-fat mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup chopped drained oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes
  • 1 (4 oz) can sliced olives, drained
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh chives OR 2 tbsp. sliced green onions

All you do:

1. Blend the artichoke hearts, Parmesan cheese, sour cream, mayonnaise, sun-dried tomatoes, olives and chives in a bowl. Place in ovenproof baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees until bubbly, if desired.

Butter Sauce

All you need:

  • 1/2 cup unsalted melted butter
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 3/4 tsp garlic salt
  • 1/2 tsp dried dill weed
  • dash white pepper

All you do:

1. Blend ingredients together in a bowl.

The dips may be prepared up to two days in advance. Reheat the butter sauce as needed.

Sustainable Business 101: Why Use Industry Leading Sustainable Seafood Practices?

Right now, certain types of seafood are overfished or harvested in a way that causes undue stress to the environment and other sea life. At Hy-Vee, we believe retailers need to step up and take care of the planet, take care of its ecosystems and leave them better than we found them.

That’s what we’re doing with our Responsible Sourcing Commitment in our Seafood Procurement Policy. Our aim with the new policy is for Hy-Vee to be an unquestioned destination for sustainable seafood and, by the end of 2015, all of our high-quality fresh and Hy-Vee brand frozen seafood will be responsibly sourced.

We don’t want our legacy to be that we didn’t respect the environment. Instead, Hy-Vee wants to be a leader in this arena and inspire other companies. The end goal is for everyone to get there. Hopefully, we can be one of those companies that can guide the entire industry towards sustainability.

This is a journey we’re on with our suppliers. We’re doing this to help them get better. To get there together, we’ve developed our commitment to Responsible Choice seafood procurement with FishWise, a non-profit group that supports sustainability through environmentally responsible business partners.

When consumers see the Responsible Choice label, they can be assured that they are buying seafood that is rated “green” (best choice) or “yellow” (a good alternative) by the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s Seafood Watch Program. These ratings are derived from scientific and peer reviewed assessments that analyze the effects the fishery or fish farm has on the environment and other species.

Couple that with Hy-Vee’s commitment to the best and freshest goods, and the Responsible Choice labeling gives our customers complete confidence that what they buy is supporting the health of their families and that of the oceans.

We want customers to know that it’s where we say it’s from, it’s the freshest they can get, that there is integrity behind it, and that it’s our mission to do business in a way that promotes the well-being of our customers, employees, communities and the global environment.

Responsible Sourcing: It’s About Doing the Right Thing

Boat on Alaskan waters

At Hy-Vee, we’ve made a commitment to consumers and to the industry to responsibly source all of our fresh and Hy-Vee brand frozen seafood by the end of 2015. In the long-run, our sourcing standards mean healthier oceans and better seafood.

We think this commitment to sustainable seafood is both a corporate responsibility and a continuation of Hy-Vee’s policy to respond to consumer demand. Our job is to do the right thing. It’s part of our mantra and our brand to do the right thing for the environment and sea life. We think that’s important, and it’s becoming more and more evident that our customers are concerned with where their food comes from, how it’s raised and how it’s caught.

Customers will be able to see our commitment through our Responsible Choice labeling, shelf strips and other signage in the fresh seafood case and on our frozen Hy-Vee brand fish.

When I talk to customers about sourcing sustainable seafood or, as we call it, responsible choice seafood, they usually have three questions:

  1. What does responsible sourcing mean?
    It means purchasing seafood from fisheries and fish farms that minimize damage to the environment and other sea life, so we can ensure it will be around for future generations to enjoy.
  2. Why is Hy-Vee doing this?
    It’s simple. Hy-Vee is committed to doing the right thing. It’s the right thing for the people who work in the seafood industry and it’s the right thing for the environment. It’s a good thing for Hy-Vee, it’s a good thing for the customers and it’s a good thing for the people we do business with.
  3. If it doesn’t have Responsible Choice on the label, is it OK to eat?
    Absolutely. We’re working with our vendors to make positive changes to improve the sustainability of fisheries and farms that do not yet meet our responsible sourcing commitment. However, It’s important to not to confuse this with quality. We’ve always stood for quality and we are always going to have great quality seafood.

This is more about taking care of the environment and protecting the long-term viability of seafood species, and to make sure that happens – at least on our watch.

Recipe Spotlight: Chef Mike Zoeller’s Crab with Avocado

Dungeness Crab with Avocado

Serves: 6 (1/2 cup each)
Source: adapted from Hy-Vee Seasons Holiday 2011

All you need:

  • 2 avocados
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp Hy-Vee lemon juice
  • 1/8 tsp paprika
  • Hy-Vee salt and freshly ground black pepper, optional
  • 12 oz lump crab meat
  • 2 green onions

All you do:

  1. Halve avocados. With a paring knife, cut avocado meat into 1/4-inch squares and scoop out into a bowl.
  2. Mix garlic, lemon juice, paprika, salt and black pepper in a small bowl. Toss with crab and avocado.
  3. Garnish with green onions and chill.

Daily nutritional values:
4% vitamin A
20% vitamin C
4% calcium
4% iron
Nutrition information per serving:
Calories: 170
Carbohydrate: 7g
Cholesterol: 45mg
Dietary Fiber: 5g
Fat: 11g
Protein: 14g
Saturated Fat: 1.5g
Sodium: 220mg
Sugar: 1g
Trans fats: 0g

Recipe Spotlight: Crab Poppers

Crab Poppers

Serves: 16
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
Source: Hy-Vee ad from December 8, 2013

All you need:

  • 1 pound lump crab meat
  • 2 cups crushed Ritz crackers, divided
  • 2 tbsp Hy-Vee unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped green bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1/4 cup Hy-Vee evaporated milk
  • 2 tbsp Hy-Vee Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp Hy-Vee Worcestershire sauce
  • Hy-Vee salt and Hy-Vee black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 cup Hy-Vee skim milk
  • 1 Hy-Vee large egg
  • Hy-Vee vegetable oil

All you do:

  1. In a large bowl, combine crab meat and 1 cup cracker crumbs.
  2. In a large skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add green pepper and onion; sauté until soft, about 5 minutes. Add to bowl with crab mixture. Stir in evaporated milk, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire, salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate for 1 to 6 hours.
  3. Form crab mixture into 16 (approximately 1-1/2-inch diameter) balls. In a medium bowl, whisk milk and egg together. In a separate medium bowl, place remaining 1 cup cracker crumbs. Roll balls in egg mixture, then coat well with crumbs. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet.
  4. In a large stock pot, heat 2 inches oil to 350 degrees. Working in batches and turning occasionally, fry crab poppers until golden brown, 4 to 6 minutes per batch. Transfer to paper towels.

Recipe Spotlight: Lemon-Crab Linguine

Lemon-Crab Linguine

Serves: 8
Source: Hy-Vee ad from December 8, 2013

All you need:

  • 1 (16 oz) package Hy-Vee linguine
  • 1 tbsp Hy-Vee Select olive oil
  • 1 pound lump crabmeat
  • 1/4 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup Hy-Vee shredded Parmesan cheese
  • Hy-Vee salt and Hy-Vee black pepper, to taste
  • Chopped fresh parsley, optional

All you do:

  1. Prepare pasta according to package directions, reserving 1/2 cup pasta water.
  2. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add crab and heat through. Stir in wine and bring just to a boil. Reduce heat to low and stir in lemon juice. Add cooked pasta and Parmesan, tossing to coat well. If pasta needs more liquid, stir in reserved pasta water. Season with salt and black pepper. Top with parsley, if desired.

Daily nutritional values:
0% vitamin A
10% vitamin C
6% calcium
10% iron
Nutrition information per serving:
Calories: 300
Carbohydrate: 44g
Cholesterol: 40mg
Dietary Fiber: 2g
Fat: 4g
Protein: 20g
Saturated Fat: 0.5g
Sodium: 250mg
Sugar: 4g
Trans fats: 0g

Recipe Spotlight: Corn-Crab Cakes with Chipotle Cream

Corn Crab Cakes with Chipotle Cream

Serves: 8 (1 jumbo corn-crab cake or 2 mini corn-crab cakes each)
Source: adapted from Hy-Vee Seasons Summer 2010

All you need:

  • 1 cup Hy-Vee mayonnaise, divided
  • 1/2 cup Hy-Vee sour cream
  • 1 to 2 canned chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp Hy-Vee lemon juice
  • 1/8 tsp Hy-Vee salt
  • 4 fresh ears of corn or 2 cups Hy-Vee frozen whole kernel corn, thawed
  • 3 tbsp Hy-Vee butter, divided
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped green bell pepper
  • 2 Hy-Vee large eggs, beaten
  • 1 tbsp stone-ground mustard
  • 1 tsp Hy-Vee Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 to 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 1/3 cups Hy-Vee plain bread crumbs, divided
  • 12 oz lump crab meat
  • 1/4 cup cornmeal

All you do:

  1. For chipotle cream, stir together 1/2 cup mayonnaise, sour cream, chipotle peppers, lemon juice and salt in a small bowl. Cover and chill until ready to serve.
  2. If using fresh corn, cut the kernels off the cobs. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a skillet. Add corn, onion and bell pepper. Cook about 5 minutes or until onions and peppers are soft. Cool 10 minutes.
  3. Stir together eggs, remaining 1/2 cup mayonnaise, mustard, Worcestershire sauce and cayenne pepper in a large bowl. Stir in cooled corn, onion and peppers. Gently fold in 2/3 cup bread crumbs and crab meat. Chill mixture in the freezer for 10 minutes.
  4. To make jumbo corn-crab cakes, using a 1/2-cup measuring cup, shape crab meat mixture into 8 (1/2-inch-thick) patties. To make mini corn-crab cakes, using a 1/4-cup measuring cup, shape crab meat mixture into 16 (1/2-inch-thick) patties. Place on baking sheet and chill patties 10 minutes for easier handling.
  5. Stir together remaining 2/3 cup bread crumbs and cornmeal in a 9-inch pie plate. Dip patties into crumb mixture, turning to coat.
  6. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add patties and cook until golden brown, about 4 to 5 minutes per side for jumbo cakes and 3 to 4 minutes for mini cakes. Repeat using remaining tablespoon butter and remaining patties. Serve with chipotle cream.

Daily nutritional values:
8% vitamin A
10% vitamin C
8% calcium
10% iron
Nutrition information per serving:
Calories: 450
Carbohydrate: 29g
Cholesterol: 110mg
Dietary Fiber: 2g
Fat: 32g
Protein: 13g
Saturated Fat: 8g
Sodium: 640mg
Sugar: 4g
Trans fats: 0g