YO! Sushi was founded in 1997 by British entrepreneur Simon Woodroffe. The current owner is Quilvest and members of the YO! Sushi Senior Management team. YO! Sushi opened its first restaurant in Soho, London in January 1997. A second restaurant followed opening in Harvey Nichols. By 2001 it became the market leader in sushi restaurants.
In 2000, Robin Rowland became CEO and in 2002 YO! Sushi opened their first restaurant outside of London, in Manchester's Selfridges. By 2003, the company had 12 chains open, and the first franchise opened in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Two new franchises opened in 2007 - one in Dublin, the other in Moscow. In 2010, they opened their 50th company-owned restaurant in Market Place, London.
In 2008, they became the first catering group to adopt the Food Standards Agency's traffic light colour-coding system, which allows customers to see nutritional information about the food they are eating.
Since the founding of the company back in 1997, YO! Sushi has sourced all fish from reputable suppliers who share their concerns with regards to environmental issues and sustainability of at-risk species through over fishing and the subsequent depletion of certain fish. As salmon and tuna (along with cod) make up 50% of fish consumed in the UK, here are the Yo! Sushi facts surrounding their best sellers:
Salmon - Scottish salmon will come from specific locations at different times of the year, the locations for 2011 are Loch Fyne, Loch Striven East Argyll and Bute mainland Scotland and also Loch Roag Isle of Lewis Outer Hebrides. The Scottish salmon that YO! Sushi uses is harvested from farms situated in high quality sea-lochs around the coast of Scotland. Each farm has “pens” which contain less than 2% fish in over 98% sea water. Through the use of DNA, there is full traceability back to the parents of the egg which produced the salmon. Each pen is left to fallow for a minimum of one year after harvesting. Fresh Scottish salmon is delivered to YO! Sushi restaurants six days per week, within a maximum of 72 hours of harvest.
Tuna - Due to the steep decline in numbers of Bluefin tuna in the world’s oceans, YO! Sushi has never sold, and will not sell, Bluefin tuna. Only Yellowfin tuna is sold at YO! Sushi, and is predominantly sourced in the Maldives and Sri Lanka. Both of these sources combine pole and line fishing methods. Pole or line fishing reduces “by-catch” (other fish species) and ensures only Yellowfin tuna are caught. Line fishing takes place away from areas known to contain cetaceans (whales, dolphins and porpoises) and “anti-turtle” hooks are used, with YO! Sushi fisheries operating to the Earth Island Institute (EII) standards. The tuna is only fished in areas of the lowest level of pollution and all the vessels are approved by the Organisation For The Promotion of Responsible Tuna Fishes.
For more details please visit http://www.yosushi.com/.