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Is it time for a global seafood association?
Wednesday,8 July,2009 12:58:54
There is no association looking after the interests of the global seafood industry, and in this day and age, with everything having global consequences, it really makes you wonder why that is.
In Australia, we have no single body which looks after the fishing, aquaculture and seafood-processing industries. But other countries do have such organizations, and maybe it is about time this started coming together.
Today, non-government organizations are international, and they have taken the high ground in many seafood debates, probably none more so than eco-labeling. Industry has allowed this to happen and will suffer the consequences unless things start changing.
Maybe things are on the move in this area, because while I was in Bangkok from 11 to 14 May a group of national seafood associations partnered to form the ASEAN (The Association of Southeast Asian Nations) Seafood Industry Association.
Hopefully, this new dynamic will lead to a global group. It is certainly the first time I can recall national bodies signing an agreement to work together on a number of issues. All the credit to them.
Seafood is by far the most traded food commodity in the world, so it is somewhat strange that there is no international association. Certainly things could be much better if we were dealing with issues globally. Decisions are made globally, yet the industry still relies on a few countries to get involved in many of these issues. The more industry is involved, the easier this burden would be. Certainly things could be better for all if this was to occur.