How the VISwijzer works

View our ratings methodology

With help of the VISwijzer, it is easy to check if the fish that you want buy is sustainable. But how does this this?

The VISwijzer is managed and maintained by Good Fish. It is our online tool providing sustainability advice for fisheries and aquaculture based on evaluations following a standard methodology. These evaluations result in scores indicating the level of sustainability. Scores are presented using a traffic light system: red indicates significant sustainability issues with the catch or farming method, orange signifies a sustainability concern, and green denotes sustainable, good fish.


We have developed the VISwijzer for you as consumer! It makes it even easier to make sustainable choices. Do you know how the VISwijzer works or how it can be used? Watch the animation below and find out!

What is assessed on the VISwijzer?

The assessments on the VISwijzer are an advice and are based on the most recent (scientific) data and documentation regarding fish stocks, ecological impact and management. To make it easier to see the differences between sustainability assessments for wild caught fish and farmed fish, a distinction has been made between two categories.

Wild caught fish

  • Fish stock and fishing pressure
  • Ecosystem effects
  • Fisheries management

Farmed fish

  • Use of resources
  • Environmental impact
  • Aquaculture management

Questionaire and scoring

Each fish species is assessed separately. The assessment method consists of a questionnaire for wild-caught fish species and a questionnaire for farmed fish species. For each fish species, you need to know where the fish comes from and the technique used to catch or farm it. The questionnaires cover all kinds of important environmental and sustainability topics. Points can be earned for each question. The amount of points determines whether the fish comes in red, orange or green. When a fish has 0 – 50%, it is red. When it gets 50 – 80% of the points, it is orange. When the fish gets more than 80%, it falls into the green column.

The VISwijzer currently does not consider animal welfare in fisheries, food safety and CO2 emissions in aquaculture and during transportation. However, we do have an opinion on these matters. More information can be found on our webpage seafood issues.

The assessment process

The sustainability assessments on the VISwijzer are conducted by independent evaluators from various organizations.

If you wish to go into further detail regarding our assessment methodology, follow this link to the WWF website to look into our shared methodology.