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Editorial commentaries on the domestic and global seafood industry. 

Tri Marine Samoa

In January 2015, Tri Marine, an American seafood giant based in Bellevue, Washington with more than 5,000 employees involved in fishing processing, trading and distributing tuna, opened a new USD 70 million (EUR 63.6 million) tuna canning factory in the village of Atu’u in the U.S. territory of American Samoa with great fanfare.

The Samoa Tuna Processors factory was equipped with state-of-the-art technology producing shelf-stable and frozen products that were marketed and sold to the U.S...

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Vietgap

The Vietnamese Good Agriculture (and Aquaculture) Practice certification scheme, VietGap, is of no use to Vietnamese seafood exporters trying to get their products accepted abroad. Importers do not require it and are rather seeking certification by internationally recognized organizations instead.

Lê Văn Quang, chairman of the Minh Phú Seafood Joint Stock Corporation, which has been processing and exporting shrimp for 35 years, told Vietnam News, “VASEP [the Vietnam Association of Seafood...

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Childlabor

A recent feature article by Associated Press (AP) outlining poor working conditions on some U.S. fishing boats serves to highlight that such practices are still very much a live issue.

While forced labor was not found in this instance, the article linked its findings to those printed in the U.K.’s Guardian newspaper in June 2014, which outlined the level of slavery still prevalent in the Thai shrimp industry. The article thus appeared to condemn the U.S. vessels by implication.

In practice...

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HongKongsustainability

Passengers going through Hong Kong airport recently will have noticed the large posters warning against trafficking of ivory, put there by the city’s Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department. The posters are welcome but what of the tons of illegally caught rare fish that are regularly transported into and through this prosperous city? Don’t endangered reef fish species deserve similar posters?

The city may be Asia’s top hub for seafood trading and consumption, but Hong Kong’s...

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Jakoten

Kenji Sasaki, the owner of a translation company in Nagoya, gave me an interesting gift when I visited his office last week: a package of “jakoten” from his hometown of Uwajima, in Ehime Prefecture on Shikoku Island.

Jakoten is a deep-fried fish paste (surimi) product that bears about the same relation to kamaboko (cured surimi) as whole-grain from your local craft bakery bears to factory-made white bread.

It may just be that Mr. Sasaki gives odd gifts—he unexpectedly gave my wife a pineapple...

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